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Perspectives on South Texas Series, sponsored by Texas A&M University-Kingsville

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Perspectives on South Texas Series, sponsored by Texas A&M University-Kingsville

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African Americans in South Texas History

Edited by Bruce A. Glasrud

The history of South Texas is more racially and ethnically complex than many people realize. As a border area, South Texas has experienced some especially interesting forms of racial and ethnic intersection, influenced by the relatively small number of blacks (especially in certain counties), the function and importance of the South Texas cattle trade, proximity to Mexico, and the history of anti-black violence. The essays in African Americans in South Texas History give insight into this fascinating history. The articles in this volume, written over a span of almost three decades, were chosen for their readability, scholarship, and general interest. Contributors: Jennifer Borrer Edward Byerly Judith Kaaz Doyle Rob Fink Robert A. Goldberg Kenneth Wayne Howell Larry P. Knight Rebecca A. Kosary David Louzon Sarah R. Massey Jeanette Nyda Mendelssohn Passty Janice L. Sumler-Edmond Cary D. Wintz Rue Wood " . . . a valuable addition to the literature chronicling the black experience in the land of the Lone Star. While previous studies have concentrated on regions most reflective of Dixie origins, this collection examines the tri-ethnic area of Texas adjoining Mexico wherein cotton was scarce and cattle plentiful. Glasrud has assembled an excellent group of essays from which readers will learn much."-L. Patrick Hughes, professor of history, Austin Community College

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African Americans in South Texas History

Bruce A. Glasrud

The history of South Texas is more racially and ethnically complex than many people realize. As a border area, South Texas has experienced some especially interesting forms of racial and ethnic intersection, influenced by the relatively small number of blacks (especially in certain counties), the function and importance of the South Texas cattle trade, proximity to Mexico, and the history of anti-black violence. The essays in African Americans in South Texas History give insight into this fascinating history.
The articles in this volume, written over a span of almost three decades, were chosen for their readability, scholarship, and general interest.
Contributors:
Jennifer Borrer
Edward Byerly
Judith Kaaz Doyle
Rob Fink
Robert A. Goldberg
Kenneth Wayne Howell
Larry P. Knight
Rebecca A. Kosary
David Louzon
Sarah R. Massey
Jeanette Nyda Mendelssohn Passty
Janice L. Sumler-Edmond
Cary D. Wintz
Rue Wood

" . . . a valuable addition to the literature chronicling the black experience in the land of the Lone Star. While previous studies have concentrated on regions most reflective of Dixie origins, this collection examines the tri-ethnic area of Texas adjoining Mexico wherein cotton was scarce and cattle plentiful. Glasrud has assembled an excellent group of essays from which readers will learn much."-L. Patrick Hughes, professor of history, Austin Community College

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Ecología y Manejo de Venado Cola Blanca

By Timothy Edward Fulbright and J. Alfonso Ortega-S

Originally published in English as White-Tailed Deer Habitat: Ecology and Management on Rangelands (Texas A&M University Press, 2005), this Spanish-language edition brings a valuable management tool to a new reading audience. Unlike other books on white-tailed deer in places where rainfall is relatively high and the environment stable, this book takes an ecological approach to deer management in the semiarid lands of Oklahoma, Texas, and northern Mexico. These are the least productive of white-tail habitats, where periodic drought punctuates long-term weather patterns. The book’s focus on this landscape across political borders is one of its original and lasting contributions and makes this Spanish language edition particularly appropriate.

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Kineño Remembers

From the King Ranch to the White House

By Lauro F. Cavazos

On September 20, 1988, Lauro Cavazos became the first Hispanic in the history of the United States to be appointed to the Cabinet, when thenvice president George H. W. Bush swore him in as secretary of education. Cavazos, born on the legendary King Ranch in South Texas and educated in a two-room ranch schoolhouse, served until December 1990, after which he returned to his career in medical education and academic administration. In this engaging memoir, he recounts not only his years in Washington but also the childhood influences and life experiences that informed his policies in office. The ranch, he says, taught him how to live. These pages are full of glimpses into life on the famous ranch. Cavazos tells of Christmas parties, cattle work, and schooling. In his home, he was introduced to a natural bilingualism: he and his siblings were encouraged to speak only English with their father and only Spanish with their mother. Cavazos describes the high educational expectations his parents held. After service in World War II, Cavazos went to college and earned a doctorate from Iowa State University, launching him on a career in medical education. In 1980 he returned to his alma mater, Texas Tech University, as its tenth presidentthe first Hispanic and the first graduate of the university to serve in that post. As secretary of education, Cavazos stressed a commitment to reading. Indeed, he once told a group of educators that the curriculum for the first three years of school should be “reading, reading, and more reading.” His career is as interesting as it is inspiring, and Cavazos’ memoir joins the ranks of emerging success stories by Mexican Americans that will provide models for aspiring young people today.

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Nesting Birds of a Tropical Frontier

The Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas

By Timothy Brush

The story behind the birds everyone wants to see Halfway between Dallas and Mexico City, along the last few hundred miles of the Rio Grande, lies a subtropical outpost where people come from all over the world to see birds. Located between the temperate north and the tropic south, with desert to the west and ocean to the east, the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas provides habitat for a variety of birds seen nowhere else in the United States. If you want to see a Hooked-billed Kite, Muscovy Duck, or Altamira Oriole, this is the place. Drawing on years of personal observation and study, Timothy Brush has written a classic work of natural history about the little-known breeding bird communities of the Valley and the diversity of nesting strategies and behaviors that can be seen. Brush estimates that there are more than 150 current breeding species in the Lower Rio Grande Valley. In Nesting Birds of a Tropical Frontier, he describes the habits, distribution, changes in occurrence, and general outlook of these as well as former breeders, concentrating on Valley specialties and other birds of particular interest in the Valley. The species are all dependent upon appropriate habitat, from riparian forest to mesquite savannah, and Brush describes the history of these habitats and the special features that keep the birds coming. He also discusses conservation and the need for both large-scale land acquisitions by public and private groups and small-scale restoration through urban parks and individual landscaping. Art by Gerald Sneed and color photographs by several of Texas’ top nature photographers show off some of the Valley’s famous birds. Historical maps of vegetation and geology help us gain a better perspective on the changes that have taken place along the Rio Grande and on the breeding bird communities of the U.S.–Mexico frontier.

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Petra's Legacy

The South Texas Ranching Empire of Petra Vela and Mifflin Kenedy

By Jane Clements Monday and Frances Brannen Vick

The matriarch of one of the most important families in Texas history, Petra Vela Kenedy has remained a shadowy presence in the annals of South Texas. In this biography of Petra Vela Kenedy, the authors not only tell her story but also relate the history of South Texas through a woman’s perspective. Utilizing previously unpublished letters, journals, photographs, and other primary materials, the authors reveal the intimate stories of the families who for years dominated governments, land acquisition, commerce, and border politics along the Rio Grande and across the Wild Horse Desert. From Petra’s early life in the landed ranchero society of northern Mexico, through her alliance with Luis Vidal—an officer in the Mexican army to whom she bore eight children—until her move to Brownsville after Vidal’s death, Petra lived in Mexico. When she moved to Texas, having taken Vidal’s name, she represented a link to the landed families of the region. Mifflin Kenedy, a steamboat captain who had first come to Texas during the Mexican War, married into her world, acquiring local respectability and stature when he took Petra as his wife. The story of their life together encompasses war, the taming of a frontier, the blending of cultures, the origin of a ranching empire, and the establishment of a foundation and trust that still endure today, giving millions to Texas through charitable gifts. An attractive woman of business acumen, strong religious convictions, and intense family loyalty, Petra Vela Kenedy’s influence through her husband and her children left a legacy whose exploration is long overdue.

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Plants of Deep South Texas

A Field Guide to the Woody and Flowering Species

By Ken King and Alfred Richardson

A Field Guide to the Woody and Flowering Species   Covering the almost three million acres of southernmost Texas known as the Lower Rio Grande Valley, this user-friendly guide is an essential reference for nature enthusiasts, farmers and ranchers, professional botanists, and anyone interested in the plant life of Texas. Alfred Richardson and Ken King offer abundant photographs and short descriptions of more than eight hundred species of ferns, algae, and woody and herbaceous plants—two-thirds of the species that occur in this region. Plants of Deep South Texas opens with a brief introduction to the region and an illustrated guide to leaf shapes and flower parts. The book's individual species accounts cover: Leaves Flowers Fruit Blooming period Distribution Habits Common and scientific names In addition, the authors' comments include indispensible information that cannot be seen in a photograph, such as the etymology of the scientific name, the plant's use by caterpillars and its value from the human perspective. The authors also provide a glossary of terms, as well as an appendix of butterfly and moth species mentioned in the text.

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Texas Quails

Ecology and Management

Edited by Leonard A. Brennan; Foreword by Katharine Armstrong

Nothing is more evocative of the Texas outdoors than the whistled call of the bobwhite. While the familiar two-note greeting is now just a memory for most of us who live in the state’s growing urban sprawl, this bird is an economic commodity on par with crops and livestock in some regions of Texas. Three other native species of quail also inhabit Texas. Like the northern bobwhite, the scaled quail is significant as a game bird. The other two species, Gambel’s quail and Montezuma quail, are found in limited areas of southwestern Texas and represent an important indicator of forest, rangeland, and habitat conditions. Texas Quails presents the first complete assessment of the four species of quail found in this vast state. Experts describe each of them and examine all geographic regions of the state for historical and current population trends, habitat status, and research needs. These experts also discuss management practices, hunting issues, economics, and diseases. With the recent creation of the Texas Quail Conservation Initiative, this volume provides a timely and comprehensive view of quail science and stewardship.

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White-Tailed Deer Habitat

Ecology and Management on Rangelands

By Timothy Edward Fulbright

For most of the last century, range management meant managing land for livestock. How well a landowner grew the grass that cattle ate was the best measure of success. In this century, landowners look to hunting and wildlife viewing for income; rangeland is now also wildlife habitat, and they are managing their land not just for cattle but also for wildlife, most notably deer and quail. Unlike other books on white-tailed deer in places where rainfall is relatively high and the environment stable, this book takes an ecological approach to deer management in the semiarid lands of Oklahoma, Texas, and northern Mexico. These are the least productive of white-tail habitats, where periodic drought punctuates long-term weather patterns. The book’s focus on this landscape across political borders is one of its original and lasting contributions. Another is its contention that good management is based on ecological principles that guide the manager’s thinking about: Habitat Requirements of White-Tailed Deer White-Tailed Deer Nutrition Carrying Capacity Habitat Manipulation Predators Hunting

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White-Tailed Deer Habitat

Ecology and Management on Rangelands

José Alfonso Ortega-Santos

The original, 2006 edition of Timothy Edward Fulbright and J. Alfonso Ortega-S.’s White-Tailed Deer Habitat: Ecology and Management on Rangelands was hailed as “a splendid reference for the classroom and those who make their living from wildlife and the land” and as “filling a niche that is not currently approached in the literature.”

In this second, full-color edition, revised and expanded to include the entire western United States and northern Mexico, Fulbright and Ortega-S. provide a carefully reasoned synthesis of ecological and range management principles that incorporates rangeland vegetation management and the impact of crops, livestock, predation, and population density within the context of the arid and semiarid habitats of this broad region. As landowners look to hunting as a source of income and to the other benefits of managing for wildlife, the clear presentation of the up-to-date research gathered in this book will aid their efforts. Essential points covered in this new edition include:

White-tailed deer habitat requirements
Nutritional needs of White-tailed deer
Carrying capacity
Habitat management
Hunting

Focused across political borders and written with an understanding of environments where periodic drought punctuates long-term weather patterns, this revised and expanded edition of White-Tailed Deer Habitat: Ecology and Management on Rangelands will aid landowners, researchers, and naturalists in their efforts to integrate land management and use with sound ecological practices.

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