Representations of Texas Indians in Texas Myth and Memory: 1869-1936
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My dissertation illuminates three important issues central to the field of Texas Indian history. First, it examines how Anglo Texans used the memories of a Texas frontier with “savage” Indians to reinforce a collective identity. Second, it highlights several instances that reflected attempts by Anglo Texans to solidify their place as rightful owners of the physical land as well as the history of the region. Third, this dissertation traces the change over time regarding these myths and memories in Texas. This is an important area of research for several reasons. Texas Indian historiography often ends in the 1870s, neglecting how Texas Indians abounded in popular literature, memorials, and historical representations in the years after their physical removal. I explain how Anglo Texans used the rhetoric of race and gender to “other” indigenous people, while also claiming them as central to Texas history and memory. Throughout this dissertation, I utilize primary sources such as state almanacs, monument dedication speeches, newspaper accounts, performative acts, interviews, and congressional hearings. By investigating these primary sources, my goal is to examine how Anglo Texans used these representations in the process of dispossession, collective remembrance, and justification of conquest, 1869-1936.
Thompson, Tyler L. (2019). Representations of Texas Indians in Texas Myth and Memory: 1869-1936. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from