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270Southwestern Historical QuarterlyOctober people collect art, coins, or crafts; perhaps collecting simply means that the collector appreciates the craftsmanship, history, or artistic quality of a given object. Indian-Made provides an interesting and informative view into die mentality of white traders and consumers of Navajo crafts. Chapter six, which I consider to be die book's strongest, provides a fascinating description of die controversy surrounding the definition and use of the term "Indian made" in the 1930s. IndianMade is well researched and gives valuable insights into the marketing of Navajo goods and culture. Texas State University-San MarcosPeter B. Dedek Salt Warriors: Insurgency on tL· Rio Grande. By Paul Cool. (College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2008. Illustrations, notes, index. ISBN 9781603440165, $24.95 cloth.) Paul Cool's Salt Warriors is a welcome contribution to the literature on social conflict in Texas and to studies of the San Elizario Salt War in particular. Making effective use of disparate and scattered sources, Cool provides a detailed narrative of the events leading up to the conflict and its consequences. Salt Warriors gives readers both the essence and complexity of the political and social dimensions of this little known but significant West Texas rebellion of 1877. Cool argues tiiat the imposition of market forces sets the stage for the clash between ambitious, newly arriving Anglo and local Mexicano residents with a long tradition of "Indian fighting" and guerrilla war. More importantly, Cool insists that lawless, racially motivated violence between Anglos and Pásenos continued for more than a year afterwards. Salt Warriors examines the personal background of the major figures who made bids for the lucrative mineral deposits. Thus, Cool provides ethnographic depth that helps explain the actions that precipitated the conflict. Cool is sympathetic to local Mexicanos, acknowledging the level of organization, military capacity, and political resolve that led to the outmaneuvering ofthe U.S. military, the capture of a Texas Ranger detachment, and the public execution ofprominent Anglos. A significant portion ofthe study referenced throughout is Cool's painstaking examination ofa wide variety ofnewspaper accounts that presented the views ofprominent politicians and military leaders worried about the Salt War. More importantly, Salt Warriors exposes the national preoccupation widi Mexican nationals violating U.S. territory and the fears of an impending war with Mexico. Cool reminds readers how the Salt War revealed the divided views of a nation ambivalent about its relationship with its southern neighbor. Despite its strengths, Cool's narrative success is not, unfortunately, matched by his effort to situate the Salt War into broader historical debates. Cool evokes market forces, but he does not fully engage the literature on capitalist transformation in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands during the nineteenth century, thereby omitting older studies of northern Mexico's economic transformation and more recent monographs that examine die complex interdependence between the frontiers of northern Mexico and the American Soudiwest. A more careful race and class 2oogBook Reviews271 analysis would expose, for example, the competition between Anglo and Mexicano freighting outfits and access to critical markets in addition to salt. In this instance, Pásenos become more than just brave and indignant "salt warriors," but are also aggrieved entrepreneurs violendy displaced by Anglo dominated business cliques. Disappointingly, Cool evokes the "Texas doctrine" as an uncontested explanatory device for the motivations of intrepid Anglo frontiersman, failing to expose readers to the critical debates about the frequency and prevalence as well as die racial and gendered dimensions of frontier conflict. Similarly, Cool's efforts to explain the conduct of the Frontier Battalion echoes earlier hagiographies ofTexas Rangers , resembling standard interpretations of westward expansion that uncritically celebrate Anglos as enterprising, bold frontiersman and entrepreneurs. Not surprisingly , Cool's study overlooks the contributions of Chicano scholars critical of negative representations of Mexicanos as foils for Anglo agency, including my own study of Mexicano insurgencies and local ranchero contributions to a complex history of frontier defense. In sum, Salt Warriors is a detailed study of a significant, if overlooked, event in Texas history. Readers will especially appreciate the number of maps and other useful research aids throughout the book. Salt Warriors successfully contributes to recent revisionists efforts that aim unflinchingly at the complex history of...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1558-9560
Print ISSN
0038-478X
Pages
pp. 270-271
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-06
Open Access
No
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