In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

266CIVIL WAR HISTORY context for many matters that he does cover. Terms such as "squatter sovereignty ," moreover, appear suddenly without any explanation at all. Factual errors further undermine Heidler's credibility. I found four mistakes regarding John A. Quitman, a large number when one considers that Quitman appears on only fourteen pages and in an illustration caption. Twice, for instance, Heidler tells us diat Quitman served in the U.S. Senate. Careless phrasing further generates misleading impressions. Thus, Heidler suggests that the Tertium Quids first emerged afterthe Warof 1812, thatthe federal governmentrarely enforced the Fugitive Slave Act, and that the 'Tariff of Abominations" resulted from a Jacksonian plot to raise the tariffto such high levels tiiat it would fail. Heidler could have avoided most of his errors, as well as rendered a more comprehensive account, had he more thoroughly utilized the secondary sources that he Usts in his bibliography and cast his net just a bit more widely for additional scholarship. I find it curious, for instance, that Heidler lists Ronald Takaki's article on the movement in South CaroUna to revive the African slave trade but not his book-length A Pro-Slavery Crusade (1971). Pulling the Temple Down may be one of those rare instances when the commendable goal of telling one's story from the primary sources obscures the story itself. Robert E. May Purdue University The Impact ofthe Civil War andReconstruction onArkansas: Persistence in the MidstofRuin. By Carl H. Moneyhon. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1994. Pp. 288. $35.00.) A commendable modern tendency in Southern historical writing has been to take a broader view than that imposed by the rigors of dissertation writing. As historians begin to digest material over longer time spans, they invariably become aware ofconnections and continuity. Professor Moneyhon, who began as a Texas Reconstructionist, has been working backward in time as weU as moving eastward to Arkansas in recent years. In this work, he attempts to find unity in three areas of history: antebeUum, CivU War, and Reconstruction. This places him within the continuity school ofmodern Southern historiography. This school has questioned the general interpretation of the postbellum era laid by C. Vann Woodward in his 1951 overview, Origins ofthe New South. Where Woodward saw economic, social, and poUtical change, his modern critics find continuity. Arkansas had less than forty years to develop its antebellum institutions, saw them overthrown in four especially violent and destructive war years (or more, of course, if we count the violence of Reconstruction as a continuation of the war), and endured the Republicans for only six years. A frontier state in 1 836 when admitted to the Union, it remained one in i860 and in 1890. Professor Moneyhon supports the view that cotton, landlords, and Democrats regained the ascendancy in 1874 they had possessed in i860. He makes BOOK REVIEWS267 the best case he can for the endurance of both a poUtical and economic elite, who, he argues, dominated prewar Ufe, orchestrated the state's secession, and survived the resulting debacle better than those lower on the social scale. Professor Moneyhon, the leading Marxist among current Arkansas historians, supports these views primarily from economic grounds and gives lesser weight to a number ofcultural factors. These include the determination of the Arkansas masses to keep the state as unmodernized as possible. The eUte discovered early that it might be permitted to hold office but not to govern. Also the Civil War defeat created psychological realities in Arkansas that often outweighed economic considerations. Indeed, evidence that the Bourbons recaptured the state after 1874 is hard to come by. FuU proof of the continuity thesis requires a chronological leap to at least 1920. Too many issues were stiU undecided in 1874 for this to be a suitable stopping point. Each of his three sections is based on extensive readings of primary sources basted with a tolerable tad of statistical seasonings. None is, of course, a complete history of the period, and it remains a problem for those wishing to look more in depth at both the poUtical and social issues of Arkansas Reconstruction that this period stiU has not been accorded a modern comprehensive account. Nevertheless, readers wiU...


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 266-267
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.