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Book by Utley Robert M
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A rip-snortin', six-guns-blazin' saga of good guys and bad guys who were sometimes one and the same. By taking on the Texas Rangers, Utley, an accomplished and well-regarded historian of the American West, risks treading on ground that is both hallowed and thoroughly documented. He skirts those issues by turning in a balanced history.... An accessible survey of some interesting―and bloody―times.―Kirkus Reviews
Well-written and exciting.―Library Journal
The Rangers were at their best during the years Robert Utley chronicles in Lone Star Justice. They were hard but fair men at a time when the hardness was necessary and the fairness a bonus. They may have killed off most of the people that made Texas interesting to begin with, but most of those people were trying to kill them at the time.―Weekly Standard
Exposes the Rangers to an objective light, never discounting their heroism and courage but never concealing their sometimes impulsive, sometimes outrageous behavior when violent expediency and individual ambition overrode a need to keep the peace. In highly readable and well-documented prose, he maps out the complex trails of politics, finance and personal egos that stamped the Rangers with fame.... Noting that there is truth in the heroic exploits of Ranger captains such as Ben McCulloch, Jack Hays and Rip Ford, he also points out there were just as many leaders whose personal ineptitude or political prejudices combined with willful ignorance and vicious racism to cause more problems than they solved.―Houston Chronicle
An action-packed assessment of an American institution.―Bill Ruehlmann, Virginian-Pilot
Utley, former chief historian of the National Park Service who's written a long list of books dealing with conflict, armed and cultural, in the early West, takes an intense look at the colorful history of the Rangers and traces their evolution from a loose-knit group of citizen soldiers on the 1830s frontier to a small but highly effective group of lawmen at the turn of the 20th century.... As always, his research is impeccable.―Denver Post
Utley's careful portrayal of the Texas Rangers' evolution from citizen-soldiers to Old West lawmen reveals the weaknesses and ulterior motives within the scholarly debate over the Rangers' legacy and offers a clear-eyed view of the Rangers themselves. His fine book ultimately explains why, 'despite the continuing efforts of scholars to recast the image of the Texas Ranger,' he still rides the popular imagination.―Publishers Weekly
In the annals of law enforcement few groups or agencies have become as encrusted with legend as the Texas Rangers. The always-readable historian Robert Utley has done a thorough job of chipping away these encrustations and revealing the Ranger's rather rag-and-bone, catch-as-catch-can beginning in a time when the Texas frontier was very far from being stable or safe. A fine book.―Larry McMurtry, author of Lonesome Dove
Extensively researched and well written, this new and exciting history of the Texas Rangers is certain to replace Walter P. Webb's classic, but dated, account. In a politicized age often critical of the Rangers, Utley is, above all, fairminded and never stampeded by folklore or myth.―William Goetzmann, Jack S. Blanton, Sr, Chair in History and American Studies, University of Texas at Austin
From The Lone Ranger to Lonesome Dove, the Texas Rangers have been celebrated in fact and fiction for their daring exploits in bringing justice to the Old West. In Lone Star Justice, best-selling author Robert M. Utley captures the first hundred years of Ranger history, in a narrative packed with adventures worthy of Zane Grey or Larry McMurtry.
The Rangers began in the 1820s as loose groups of citizen soldiers, banding together to chase Indians and Mexicans on the raw Texas frontier. Utley shows how, under the leadership of men like Jack Hays and Ben McCulloch, these fiercely independent fighters were transformed into a well-trained, cohesive team. Armed with a revolutionary new weapon, Samuel Colt's repeating revolver, they became a deadly fighting force, whether battling Comanches on the plains or storming the city of Monterey in the Mexican-American War. As the Rangers evolved from part-time warriors to full-time lawmen by 1874, they learned to face new dangers, including homicidal feuds, labor strikes, and vigilantes turned mobs. They battled train robbers, cattle thieves and other outlaws―it was Rangers, for example, who captured John Wesley Hardin, the most feared gunman in the West.
Based on exhaustive research in Texas archives, this is the most authoritative history of the Texas Rangers in over half a century. It will stand alongside other classics of Western history by Robert M. Utley―a vivid portrait of the Old West and of the legendary men who kept the law on the lawless frontier.
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