Cover

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Title Page, Copyright Page

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

Acknowledgments

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p. ix

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Introduction

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pp. xi-xx

The world of Harriet Ames was not the world of republican companionate marriage or of plantation patriarchy. She and Solomon Page arrived in Mexican Texas from New Orleans just before the Anglo-Texan War of Independence. In keeping with the customary way of dealing with the shortage of Catholic...

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Chapter 1: Ardent Adventurers and Borderland Beauties: Tender Ties beyond the Pale

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pp. 1-21

A multiracial frontier provided novel mating choices for men who rebuilt their personal lives in the northernmost province of the new Republic of Mexico. In 1826, after four years of marriage, William Smith of Missouri abandoned his wife, Harriet Stone, and their three children and headed for Texas to start over. ...

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Chapter 2: Eros and Dominion: Indians, Tejanos, and Anglos

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pp. 22-50

Had Sam Houston known that one day he would lead the Texas War of Independence, he might well have thought more carefully before reexploring his Indian roots as intimately as he did. After learning within days of his marriage to Eliza Allen that she loved another, the humiliated governor of Tennessee resigned his office and headed for the southwestern frontier. ...

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Chapter 3: Intimacy and Subjugation: Property Rights and Black Texans

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pp. 51-75

Circumstances in early Texas prompted men to form complicated relationships with their slave women that white society in the more settled South would have considered at least highly unorthodox. ...

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Chapter 4: Turbulent Prairie Homes: Marital Formalities and Institutional Disarray

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pp. 76-108

Bold and free-spirited Texas frontiersmen made the best of things in a primitive situation—often in ways helping little to improve communal order. Raised in a Virginia slave-owning family, young Branch T. Archer studied medicine...

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Chapter 5: Slip-knot Marriages and Patchwork Nests: The Household Redefined

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pp. 109-132

Given the capricious mating habits of many immigrants, authorities in Mexican Texas were disinclined to deal with marriage as traditional law and custom prescribed. Having recently arrived in Gonzales, Frederick Roe was fortunate to strike up a relationship with a young woman like Sarah Grogan. ...

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Chapter 6: Iniquitous Partners: Wanton Husbands and Delinquent Wives

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pp. 133-161

Social disorder in early Texas produced unusual forms of marital misconduct and equally distinctive official responses. Having recently become a widower, and with his infant daughter, Eliza, in need of a mother, Sherwood Dover of Kentucky decided to find a new wife. ...

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Conclusion

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pp. 163-165

Frederick Jackson Turner argued that antebellum southerners placed an incomparable value on the liberty to compete for the ‘‘public domain’’ and the natural resources abundantly available in the unsettled wilds further west. ...

Notes

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pp. 167-211

Bibliographical Commentary

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pp. 213-236

Index

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pp. 237-244