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A revisionist history of the Old West battle challenges popular depictions of such figures as the Earps and Doc Holliday, tracing the influence of a love triangle, renegade Apaches, and the citizens of Tombstone.
Western movies are full of images of swaggering outlaws brought to justice by valiant lawmen shooting them down in daring gunfights before riding off into the sunset. In reality it would not have happened that way. Real lawmen did not simply walk away from a gunfight—they had to face the legal system and justify shooting a civilian in the line of duty. Providing a more realistic view of criminal justice in the Old West, this history focuses on how criminals came into conflict with the law and how the law responded. The process is described in detail, from the common crimes of the day—such as train robbery and cattle theft—to the methods of apprehending criminals to their adjudication and punishment by incarceration, flogging or hanging.
Don’t miss the New York Times bestselling on-the-ground memoir from a Navy SEAL who was part of SEAL Team THREE with American Sniper Chris Kyle. Experience his deployment, from his gripping first mission to his first kill to his eventual successful return to the United States to play himself in the Oscar-nominated film directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Bradley Cooper. The Last Punisher is a bold, no-holds-barred first-person account of the Iraq War. With wry humor and moving testimony, Kevin Lacz tells the story of his tour in Iraq with SEAL Team THREE, the warrior elite of the Navy. This legendary unit, known as “The Punishers,” included Chris Kyle (American Sniper), Mike Monsoor, Ryan Job, and Marc Lee. These brave men were instrumental in securing the key locations in the pivotal 2006 Battle of Ramadi, told with stunning detail in these pages. Minute by minute, Lacz relays the edge-of-your-seat details of his team’s missions in Ramadi, offering a firsthand glimpse into the heated combat, extreme conditions, and harrowing experiences they faced every day. Through it all, Lacz and his teammates formed unbreakable bonds and never lost sight of the cause: protecting America with their fight. The Last Punisher brings the reader into the life and mind of a SEAL, demonstrating the tough realities of war. At the same time, Lacz shares how these experiences made him a better man and how proud he is of his contributions to one of this country’s most difficult military campaigns. Lacz is now an in-demand public speaker testifying to the ability of a veteran to thrive at home. The book includes an afterword on the making of the hit film American Sniper. The Last Punisher is the story of a SEAL who was never afraid to answer the call.
Thomas C. (Pidge) Robinson came to Texas from Virginia at the age of 27, fleeing a feud with a neighbor who opposed Robinson’s amorous intentions toward the neighbor’s sister. He joined the Texas Rangers in 1874, serving with legendary Capt. Leander H. McNelly’s Washington County Volunteer Militia Company A. He earned the rank of first lieutenant in this Texas Ranger company. Two years later he returned to Virginia to avenge his honor and claim the woman he loved. A learned and witty writer who sent back letters, poems, and reports for publication in Austin newspapers, Pidge also wrote most of Captain McNelly’s reports. From the newspaper submissions, backed by extensive research to document details and explain allusions, western writer Chuck Parsons has fashioned an annotated compendium of primary materials that give insight into not only the life and actions of the famous Texas Rangers but also the popular culture of post–Civil War Texas. Robinson rode with McNelly as the Rangers subdued the clashes between the Suttons and the Taylors in DeWitt County. He served on the Rio Grande frontier in actions against Juan Cortina, including the famous battle on Palo Alto Prairie. He was with a party of Rangers who invaded Mexico to recover cattle stolen from Texas ranchers. Pidge’s lively, literate, and often humorous letters give first-person accounts of these and other actions that provide a unique picture of Ranger service in the field. This Texas A&M University Press edition, incorporating newly discovered materials, also features rare period photographs, illustrations, and other helpful maps and images.
Most film critics point to classic conflicts—good versus evil, right versus wrong, civilization versus savagery—as defining themes of the American Western. In this provocative examination of Westerns from Tumbleweeds (1925) to Rango (2011), Robin L. Murray and Joseph K. Heumann argue for a more expansive view that moves beyond traditional conflicts to encompass environmental themes and struggles. The environment, after all, is the fundamental stage for most western stories, from land rush dramas that pit “sod busters” against ranchers to conflicts between mining-town communities and corporations. Because environmental issues lie at the forefront of so many conflicts today, Murray and Heumann believe that the Western is ripe for such new examination. Drawing on perspectives from both film studies and environmental history, the authors show how western films frequently deal with issues related to land use and different ways of looking at the natural world. In films as diverse as Gene Autry musicals, early John Wayne B-Westerns, and revisionist critiques such as the 2010 remake of True Grit, resources are exploited in the name of progress. Beginning with an analysis of two iconic Westerns, Shane and The Searchers, Murray and Heumann identify the environmental dichotomies—previously overlooked by critics—that are broached in both films, and they clarify the history that lies behind the environmental debates in these films and many others. How do Westerns respond to the historical contexts they present? And what do those responses suggest about American views of nature and its exploitation? The conflicts these movies address grow out of differing views of progress, frequently in relation to technology. The authors show that such binary oppositions tend to blur when examined closely, demonstrating that environmental issues are often more complex than we realize.
American Gunfight is the fast-paced, definitive, and breathtakingly suspenseful account of an extraordinary historical event -- the attempted assassination of President Harry Truman in 1950 by two Puerto Rican Nationalists and the bloody shoot-out in the streets of Washington, D.C., that saved the president's life. Written by Pulitzer Prize-winner Stephen Hunter, the widely admired and bestselling novelist and author of such books as Havana, Hot Springs, and Dirty White Boys, and John Bainbridge, Jr., an experienced journalist and lawyer, American Gunfight is at once a groundbreaking work of meticulous historical research and the vivid and dramatically told story of an act of terrorism that almost succeeded. They have pieced together, at last, the story of the conspiracy that nearly doomed the president and how a few good men -- ordinary guys who were willing to risk their lives in the line of duty -- stopped it. It is a book about courage -- on both sides -- and about what politics and devotion to a cause can lead men to do, and about what actually happens, second by second, when a gunfight explodes. It begins on November 1, 1950, an unseasonably hot afternoon in the sleepy capital. At 2:00 P.M. in his temporary residence at Blair House, the president of the United States takes a nap. At 2:20 P.M., two men approach Blair House from different directions. Oscar Collazo, a respected metal polisher and family man, and Griselio Torresola, an unemployed salesman, don't look dangerous, not in their new suits and hats, not in their calm, purposeful demeanor, not in their slow, unexcited approach. What the three White House policemen and one Secret Service agent cannot guess is that under each man's coat is a 9mm German automatic pistol and in each head, a dream of assassin's glory. At point-blank range, Collazo and then Torresola draw and fire and move toward the president of the United States. Hunter and Bainbridge tell the story of that November day with narrative power and careful attention to detail. They are the first to report on the inner workings of this conspiracy; they examine the forces that led the perpetrators to conceive the plot. The authors also tell the story of the men themselves, from their youth and the worlds in which they grew up to the women they loved and who loved them to the moment the gunfire erupted. Their telling commemorates heroism -- the quiet commitment to duty that in some moments of crisis sees some people through an ordeal, even at the expense of their lives.
How I Got This Way chronicles the true story of growing up in the 1950s on a primitive farm. With very little knowledge of his own ancestors history, the author was inspired to record his own life history so that future generations of his family would understand How I Got This Way. He also felt that it was important to preserve a record of what it was like to grow up in a rural primitive farm setting so that a unique and important time in American history would not be lost forever. The lessons he learned throughout his childhood infl uenced the man he became through his years in the Navy and later as a Telephone Man. While some may feel that the farm life experienced was cruel and unforgiving, he would say that it taught him the values of hard work, responsibility, and a sense of ethics that provided great strength of character that served him well throughout his life. His story telling is mixed with humor and honesty as it uniquely describes his childhood experiences through the tender perspective of a child. It is the story of overcoming and loving life amid sometimes great diffi culties and trials. How I Got This Way is a poignant story of a life that few will have the opportunity to experience in the future.

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