Eavesdropping on Texas History

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Mary L. Scheer
University of North Texas Press, Feb 15, 2017 - History - 352 pages
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Most writers and readers of history have at one time or another wished that they could have been at some particular defining event in history. Whether it was a moment of a great decision, a major turning point that changed everything, or simply an intriguing occurrence, many scholars and others have on occasion wished that they “could have been there.” Texas history provides infinite Lone Star episodes to consider, rooted in the widespread assumption that Texas is a colorful, unique, and exceptional place with larger-than-life heroes and narratives. Mary L. Scheer has assembled fifteen contributors to explore special moments in Texas history. The contributors assembled for this anthology represent many of the “all stars” among Texas historians: two State Historians of Texas, two past presidents of TSHA, four current or past presidents of ETHA, two past presidents of WTHA, nine fellows of historical associations, two Fulbright Scholars, and seven award-winning authors. Each is an expert in his or her field and provided in some fashion an answer to the question: At what moment in Texas history would you have liked to have been a “fly on the wall” and why? The choice of an event and the answers were both personal and individual, ranging from familiar topics to less well-known subjects. One wanted to be at the Alamo. Another chose to explore when Sam Houston refused to take a loyalty oath to the Confederacy. One chapter follows the first twenty-four hours of Lyndon Baines Johnson’s presidency after Kennedy’s assassination. Others write about the Dust Bowl coming to Texas, or when Texas Southern University was created. Their respective essays are not written as isolated occurrences or “moments,” but as causal developments presented within the larger social and political context of the period.



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Introduction Mary L Scheer editor
The New Madrid Earthquakes and Caddo Lake 18111812 Victoria H Cummins
Chapter Two A Fly on Stephen F Austins Shoulder in Mexico 18221823 Carolina Castillo Crimm
Chapter Three The Fall of the Alamo March 6 1836 Watson Arnold
The Abduction of Cynthia Ann Parker December 19 1860 Paul H Carlson and Tom Crum
Sam Houston Refuses to Take a Loyalty Oath to the Confederacy March 16 1861 Mary L Scheer
A Violent Incident at Scabtown Menard County Texas on New Years Eve 1877 Chuck Parsons
Chapter Seven With the Yalies in the Deep Woods May 1013 1909 Dan K Utley
Chapter Nine The Game of the Century November 30 1935 Bill ONeal
Chapter Ten The Firing of Homer Price Rainey November 1 1944 Light T Cummins
Speaker Sam Rayburn of Texas Vice President Harry Truman and Congressman Lyndon Johnson at the Board of Education on April 12 1945 Patric...
Chapter Twelve The Establishment of Texas Southern University 1947 Merline Pitre
The Day Lyndon Johnson Became President November 22 1963 Michael Collins
Louise Ballerstedt Raggio and the Passage of the Marital Property Act of 1967 Nancy E Baker

Black Sunday April 14 1935 Heather Green Wooten

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About the author (2017)


Mary L. Scheer is professor and chair of the history department at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. She is the author of The Foundations of Texan Philanthropy, editor of the award-winning Women and the Texas Revolution (UNT Press), and co-editor of Twentieth-Century Texas: A Social and Cultural History and Texan Identities (both UNT Press).

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