Most of my posts to date have been related to history of the Colonial Era in New England, and to my first two novels, The Heretic's Daughter and The Traitor's Wife.  But, as I'm nearing the completion of my third novel set in Texas during the Reconstruction Era of post Civil War America (and have spent the last year researching the topic) I'll be posting some discovered revelations about this little known period of Texas history. 

    One northerner visiting Texas in 1869 said that Texans were like the weather, "a perpetual enigma, a tissue of contradictions" and that its citizens did "everything for honor and nothing for justice."   The time in which this "damn yankee" made his observations was one of the most violent periods in the Republic's past.  In 1869 Texas led the country in homicide rates.  Recognizable man-killers like Cullen Baker, Elisha Guest, Wild Bill Longley and Ben Griffith walked openly in the streets and the home-grown law keepers had been effectively gutted, disarmed and disenfranchised, by the still-present Federalist forces.  A year later, in 108 counties there were 2,790 known petty and violent criminals at large.   There was general and open hostility towards the immigrant population flooding into Texas, which had been left at least physically untouched by the Civil War battles raging farther to the East; border disputes still flared with Mexico, Native Americans were being shot first and questioned second, and gun control was a hot button issue.

     Struggling to rise from the chaos, and often volunteering at great risk to themselves to restore order in their towns and fields, were men and women of the soil, settlers and cowboys who were often the real, unsung heroes of this battle to regain peace and civility to a savage place.

    The above photo is of my dad, John Hickman, who, in an earlier time, would have been happy to have been called a cowboy.

1 like ·   •  2 comments  •  flag
Twitter icon
Published on February 24, 2012 10:55 • 117 views
Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Cecilia (new)

Cecilia I loved your previous two books about your "witch" ancestors..."The Heretic’s Daughter" and "The Traitor's Wife/The Wolves of Andover"! I cannot imagine that I would not enjoy reading your newest tomb, as well!

I also enjoy stories about the Old West & know that you do extensive research in writing your books so I'm pretty sure that I would get an accurate picture of the time & place you are setting your story in which adds to the realism of your tale.

I'll really be looking forward to this upcoming book, Kathleen! I sure loved your previous books!
Take care and Cheers!!!

message 2: by Kimberly (new)

Kimberly Turner I am very excited about your upcoming book. "The Heretic's Daughter" and "The Traitor's Wife" have circled through my group of friends at college. Not having much free time to read, your books provide such a great escape from the stresses of everyday life. I adored both books. I know that your upcoming novel will be just as great. Just like I did with "The Traitor's Wife," I will be watching out for you on the book shelves. Good luck!

back to top