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TMW Book Reviews

Texas Tales and Tall Ships, Vol. 1:
Texas History from 1528-1945
the end of WW2

by Malcom Lee Johnson

Author Malcom Lee Johnson offers a comprehensive study of the history of the Lone Star State in his book, “Texas Tales and Tall Ships, Vol. 1: Texas History from 1528-1945 The End of WW2.” Texas or “Tejas” had its earliest settlement record in the 1800s. The area was a famous port where explorers and settlers traveled to and from by sailing ships.

 

Its earliest known record, however, was provided by a report written by Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca. During his expedition led by Panfilo de Narvaez, many of the men planned to walk overland and rejoin their ships at Panuco, but to no avail. In a fit of desperation, the explorers forced themselves to build five rafts to sail along the coast to reach modern-day Mexico. Unfortunately, things didn’t always go according to plan, and many had much to sacrifice for survival.

Yet, despite the difficulties during his travels, Cabeza de Vaca met and named many Native American tribes along the way. His observations of their customs and experiences are safe within the holdings of the Texas State Archives.

While that is just the beginning of the state’s vast history, the author leaves no stone unturned as he pens a reliable narrative. Many of the facts presented in the book were based on actual historical documentation, including but not limited to original letters, military orders, and other relevant documents. Readers can expect a full-scale read on many of the state’s epic events ranging from the James Long Expedition, the Pastry War, and even the evolution of the state’s flags.

It’s safe to say that it’s not easy to tackle the history of a state as large as Texas. Nevertheless, the author makes every line worth reading with just the first volume alone. His talent, hard work, and dedication to creating a handy guide for historians are worth every applause. I urge every history buff and curriculum to use his book as an excellent reference for research, studies, and more.

– The Moving Words Review

Official Entry: The Most Moving Book Award, Jan. 2, 2023

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