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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 die Texas frontier. Humboldt State UniversityManuel Callahan John Ringo: King oftL· Cowboys: His Life and Timesfrom tL· Hoo Doo War to Tombstone. 2nd ed. By David Johnson. Foreword by Chuck Parsons. (Denton: University of North Texas Press, 2008. Pp. 380. Illustrations, notes, bibliography, index. ISBN 9781574412437, $29.95 cloth.) John Ringo (frequendy rendered Ringgold) cut a swath across the Southwest. Just how wide and significant is die task of David Johnson, who first put Ringo between hard covers in 1996, and who now incorporates new information into a second, revised edition of that book. His effort to set the story straight will appeal to students of western law and disorder. Ringo moved from his native Indiana to California, and at twenty-somediing gravitated to Texas in the early 1870s. Here he became involved in the Mason County, or "Hoodoo," War, was a party to two murders, and spent time in the Travis County lockup. In 1879 he headed for the milder, Rangerless climate of southern Arizona Territory bearing bona fide hardcase credentials. In and around Tombstone, the silver boomtown that offered catde for rusding and stage coaches for waylaying, he fell in with the miscreant "cowboy" element that included Curly Bill Brocius, die McLaurys, and the Clantons, all of diem Texas-seasoned. Arrayed against them were the equally shady Earp brothers and their tubercular dentist/ shootist/card shark ally, Doc Holliday. Following the Earps' departure from Tombstone to avoid their murder trial, Ringo went into a deep depression, took prolonged refuge in the botde, and, in July 1882, at age thirty-two, apparently committed suicide, although the circumstances of his death remain in doubt. Flawed 272Southwestern Historical QuarterlyOctober as he might have been, Ringo, contendsJohnson, was more tragic than bad. His verdict draws from die Tombstone Epitaph that eulogized Ringo as "a stricdy honorable man" whose "word was as good as his bond" (278). In making his case, the author, highly regarded among the Western Writers of America, takes on the lingering image of Ringo that emerges from the sanctification ofWyatt Earp in the fictionalized writings of Walter Noble Burns (Tombstone: An Iliad oftL· Southwest, 1927) and Stuart Lake (WyattEarp:FrontierMarshal, 1931). He also differs withJack Burrows (John Ringo: TL· Gunfighter Who Never Was, 1 987) regarding Ringo's early life, his role in the Hoodoo War, and his family's view of him. Convinced that interest in Ringo has "blossomed" (268) over the past half century, Johnson undertook prodigious research, the basis of a remarkably detailed study that should constitute the last word on an individual whose place in southwestern history is both secure and minor. Burdensome, however, are incessant and overly long block quotes diat carry the story and deaden an otherwise solid narrative. Anodier distraction is die repetition of "Earp apologists," "supporters of Earp," and "proponents of Earp" in the author's successful attempt to demonize Wyatt Earp. Nevertheless, Johnson has filled factual...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1558-9560
Print ISSN
0038-478X
Pages
pp. 271-272
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-06
Open Access
No
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