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Texas: A Compact History

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Texas: A Compact History

by Archie P. McDonald

Texas “a whole other country”-a slogan that promotes tourism as much within the Lone Star State as elsewhere-is familiar to native Texans and those adopted sons and daughters who “got here just as quickly as they could.” Texas is as varied as East Texas timberland, hundreds of miles of seashore, prairies of the Central and High Plains, and the dry desert of far West Texas. When traveling abroad and asked, “Where are you from?” residents of forty-nine of the United States usually respond, “the USA.” Nearly every citizen of the Lone Star State will answer “Texas!” The world encourages such chauvinism. Mass media celebrates and exploits Texas and Texans in television and motion pictures about the Alamo, Texas Rangers, the oil industry, and athletics, to name only a few genre. Texans’ pride in their distinctiveness increases when their state is paraded-or satired-and they consciously “pass it on” to succeeding generations. But what does it mean to be a Texan? How did Texas come to be as it is? Texas: A Compact History provides answers to such questions about Texans and Texas. It tells the story of Texas history and provides thoughtful interpretations about the state’s development, all with the general reader in mind-in a brief, easily read narrative. ARCHIE P. McDONALD is the author of numerous books dealing with various aspects of Texas history, including Back Then: Simple Pleasures and Everyday Heroes (State House Press, 2005)

 

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