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270CIVIL WAR HISTORY Americans, she concluded, were more handsome than the French, "but they are effeminate and lazy." Mother Hyacinth and her band of missionaries nevertheless adjusted to American ways and learned to tolerate them. In this connection historians will find Mother Hyacinth's changing views on Negroes interesting . On first encountering the slave market in New Orleans she was horrified , and she indignantly rejected a suggestion by the Bishop that she purchase a slave for use at the Daughters' convent. Within a few months, however, she had overcome her repugnance enough to buy a bondsman. And when the slave escaped, in 1863, she revealed the extent to which she had embraced Southern attitudes when she wrote: "Our ugly Simon, tired of being happy [has escaped], taking with him one of our horses. That's what a slave is!!!" Mother Hyacinth was not much interested in politics, but when the war began she, like most other southern Catholics, unquestioningly supported the southern cause. Her general views of the war were naive and simplistic, but her first-hand observations of Banks's operations provide interesting information on the Red River Campaign. Sister McCants has done a competent job of editing. Her translation is fluent and she has selected letters carefully with an eye for continuity and interest. She is particularly good at identifying church figures mentioned in the correspondence and in explaining historical developments affecting the Daughters of the Cross. Her work is less satisfactory when a wider historical knowledge is required, and occasionally this lack of breadth leads her into error. For example, on May 13, 1862, Yves-Marie Le Conniat reported: "Lee, today . . . has sent word to Washington either to surrender or be bombarded." To this the editor comments: "Lee seemed to have the upper hand. The main Union army was in full retreat." Actually McClellan, after months of preparation, had just landed his army at Fortress Monroe in Virginia and was beginning his lengthy Peninsular Campaign. Lee would not gain the commanding position which Father Le Conniat speaks of until after Second Manassas , several months later. Donald E. Reynolds East Texas State University Mining Engineers and the American West: The Lace-Boot Brigade, 1849-1933. By Clark C. Spence. (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1970. Pp. xii, 407. $12.50.) In recent years several historians of the American West have clarified the hitherto obscure role of various individuals and groups who had a part in the development of the region. Thus William Goetzman and W. Turrentine Jackson have delineated the contributions of scientists and the United States Army Engineers while Gene Gressley has underscored the influence of financiers and bankers. Now Clark Spence further BOOK REVIEWS271 broadens historical horizons with this detailed account of mining engineers in the trans-Mississippi West between 1849 and 1933. To a considerable extent Spence has written a collective biography of scores of well known leaders in the profession. As he describes their daily lives and their careers the author covers a multitude of subjects although three major themes emerge. In the first place, specialization was a major trend in this, as in other professions in the years after 1849, as mining engineers rose from jacks-of-all-trades to highly trained professionals . This tendency was well reflected in the growth of specialized mining schools after the Civil War, and increasing public acceptance of scientific as well as practical experience. On the basis of their improved status by 1900, Spence shows, in demonstrating another major theme, mining engineers moved into high executive and managerial posts in industry. The career of Herbert Hoover served as an outstanding example to his peers. Finally, in some of the best chapters of the book, the author describes the spread of American mining practices throughout the world. After 1890, especially, engineers from the United States took their skills to South Africa, to Australia and New Zealand, to China, Korea, India, and also to Latin America. No wonder, therefore, that they were a cosmopolitan group, at home in different languages and cultures. Indeed, some, like Rossiter W. Raymond or Mark Requa, wrote poetry or novels, while Thomas A. Rickard authored twenty-five books, including a standard history of mining...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1533-6271
Print ISSN
0009-8078
Pages
pp. 270-271
Launched on MUSE
2013-01-02
Open Access
No
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