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A Brief Jeremiad

“The world is a vampireSent to drainSecret destroyersHold you up to the flamesAnd what do I getFor my pain?Betrayed desiresAnd a piece of the game.” “Despite all my rage I am still just a rat in a cageDespite all my rage I am still just a rat in a cageThen someone will say, “What is … Continue reading “A Brief Jeremiad”

California dips its big fat white toe into the nativist pool

            This is why history is so fascinating to me. The connections between people, events, or places is often surprising. When I first started looking at the men who patrolled the border with Mexico before the Border Patrol, I had no idea that the story would begin in earnest in California, more than 500 miles … Continue reading “California dips its big fat white toe into the nativist pool”

The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

                So why all the hullabaloo about wanting the southern borderlands and much of the West anyway? Didn’t the U.S. already have enough land for everyone to become the yeoman farmer of Thomas Jefferson’s dreams? Probably, but as far-fetched as it may sound, the land owned by the United States and “acquired” from Native Americans … Continue reading “The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo”

Behind the Title

Defining America at the Border: The Line Riders of the Mexican Border District, 1892-1924 is the title of my dissertation, a title that historian David Wrobel had a strong hand in developing. I can’t use the same title for my book (rules is rules), but it is a title that perfectly sums up the overall … Continue reading “Behind the Title”


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