Pate Award

Dr. Andrew Masich wins 2017 Pate Award for his book - "Civil War in the Southwest Borderlands 1861-1867"

Dr. Andrew Masich wins 2017 Pate Award for his book -

We are pleased to announce that the winner of the 2017 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History is Dr. Andrew Masich for his book "Civil War in the Southwest Borderlands 1861-1867." The Pate Award is given annually by the Fort Worth Civil War Round Table to honor the best book written on the Trans-Mississippi sector of the Civil War during the past year. The Award winner is chosen by a Committee of Members of the Fort Worth Round Table.

In keeping with it's title the book focuses on the Southwest Borderlands where not only did Union and Confederate forces clash but Indians, Hispanos, and Anglos struggled for survival, power, and dominance on both sides of the U.S.Mexico border. These conflicts are examined as interconnected civil wars with a detailed exploration of the war-making traditions of the region’s diverse peoples.

Indians, Hispanos, and Anglos brought their own weapons and tactics to the struggle, but they also shared many traditions. Before the war, the three groups engaged one another in cycles of raid and reprisal involving the taking of livestock and human captives, reflecting a peculiar mixture of conflict and interdependence.

One of the main purposes of the Pate Award is to further knowledge of the Civil War West of the Mississippi. Dr. Masich's book is noteworthy in this regard in that it is based on original research in both American and Mexican archives and includes information from almost 700 rarely used Indian Depredation Records of the period.

In short, it is an excellent book - readable, informative, interesting and well deserving of the 2017 Pate Award.

Some reviews of the book include:

"Borderland studies are very popular at the moment. Many of the military and cultural interactions described in this book have been discussed and analyzed at length elsewhere in the literature, but Andrew Masich is the first scholar to create a powerful synthesis that meaningfully integrates all of these conflicts and relationships together in a single volume. His work in Civil War in the Southwest Borderlands, 1861–1867 freshly defines the American Civil War period as a uniquely critical moment of social, political, and economic transformation in the Southwest region of North America."
Andrew Wagenhofer - Civil War Books and Authors

"Andrew Masich presents a sweeping history of the violence that inflamed the Southwest Borderlands in the mid-1860s. Anglos, Indians, and Hispanics all engaged in what Masich terms civil wars. This is impressive scholarship: deeply researched, eminently readable, and rich in detail and interpretation."
Robert Utley - author of The Indian Frontier 1846-1890

Sweeping in scale yet finally-grained in detail, Andrew Masich delivers a convincing new way of thinking about the "Civil Wars" that devastated the Southwest Borderlands between 1861 and 1867. Masich brings alive the stench of sweat, the urgent song of swift arrows, and the concussion of field artillery, all the while raising our sights to the bloody ironies of “pacification” and political incorporation. He is a masterful story-teller, whose skills have quickened a deserving story.
James F. Brooks , author of Captives & Cousins: Slavery, Kinship, and Community in the Southwest Borderlands, and Mesa of Sorrows: A History of the Awat’ovi Massacre.

Dr. Jerry Thompson Wins 2016 Pate Award For His "A Civil War History of New Mexico Volunteers and Militia"

Dr. Jerry Thompson Wins 2016 Pate Award For His

We are pleased to announce that the 2016 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History goes to Dr. Jerry Thompson for his "A Civil War History of the New Mexico Volunteers and Militia." The award is given to honor outstanding research done on the Trans-Mississippi sector of the Civil War. The book represents a 10-year effort and is the first scholarly study of the 6,500 Latinos from the Territory of New Mexico, who ably served on the southwestern frontier.

The focus of the book is on the Confederate Invasion of 1861-62 and it's effects - especially the bloody Battle of Valverde. But the emphasis is on the soldier's themselves and on the companies in which they served. On the basis of service records and numerous other archival sources Jerry is able to give the reader insight into how these units were recruited; who led them; how they were equipped; what they endured on the battlefield; how they adapted to military life and their interactions with other New Mexicans, hostile Indians, outlaws and deserters.

The book is a monumental 939 pages in length. But it's thoroughness will provide a goldmine for historians of today and tomorrow. It represents a significant achievement in Civil War scholarship and is the epitome of what we try to encourage through this Award.

Here are some of the reviews on the book.

From Civil War Books and Authors:

"New Mexico Territory during the Civil War provides a treasure trove of data pertaining to the supply and operation of frontier military posts in the southwest. Jerry Thompson has contributed to the Civil War literature a book that will appeal to a range of interested readers, from the avocational enthusiast to the professional historian."

From The Civil War Book Review:

"Thompson deserves high praise for his book. Through his efforts, Thompson has brought to life the story of many of the individuals who helped defend the New Mexico Territory during the Civil War era. While focusing primarily on the Union perspective during the conflict, Thompson has tried to do justice to all of the combatants in that area during the four years in question. Most importantly, Thompson has shown how a relatively small group of individuals (most of whom had been American citizens for only 15 years) helped their new nation maintain its authority in the face of a determined enemy during our country’s crucial moment of truth."

From Project Muse:

"In the end, Thompson’s magisterial volume will likely remain the authority on New Mexico’s wartime military organizations and the men who served in them for years to come."

Dr. Kyle Sinisi Wins the 2015 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for his book "The Last Hurrah: Sterling Price's Missouri Expedition of 1864"

Dr. Kyle Sinisi Wins the 2015 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for his book

The Fort Worth Civil War Round Table is pleased to announce that Dr. Kyle Sinisi is the winner of the 2015 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for his book "The Last Hurrah: Sterling Price's Missouri Expedition of 1864." The Pate Award is given each year to the book chosen by an independent Committee of FWCRT members that represents the best new work on the Trans-Mississippi sector of the Civil War.

In his well researched book Dr. Sinisi provides a well written, balanced and thorough account of one of the least studied and most misunderstood major campaigns of the war. "The Last Hurrah" has advanced our understanding of the Trans-Mississippi theater of the Civil War and is a most deserving selection.

Here are some of the reviews of this book:

from Civil War Books and Authors -

"For students of the Civil War in Missouri, The Last Hurrah: Sterling Price's Missouri Expedition of 1864 has been well worth the considerable wait. The first thorough military treatment of the campaign, this deeply researched and skillfully composed study also holds the added distinction of ranking among the finer examples of Civil War operational military history regardless of subject. Highly recommended."

from Mark Christ, Arkansas Historic Preservation -

"Sinisi provides a long-needed analysis of the last major military operation west of the Mississippi River. He challenges long-held assumptions about Sterling Price's disastrous 1864 Missouri invasion while addressing the unique machinations of Kansas and Missouri politics, examining the many battles that marked the raid's progress, and confronting the atrocities committed by both sides toward each other and the civilian population. "The Last Hurrah" is essential reading for anyone interested in the Trans-Mississippi theater of the Civil War."

from Daniel Sutherland, University of Arkansas -

"No scholar has explained Sterling Price's desperate attempt to capture Missouri in the fall of 1864 as thoroughly or as thoughtfully as has Sinisi. His engaging and well-researched exploration of this "last hurrah" for the Confederates in the Trans-Mississippi reveals the full complexity of Price's ill-fated campaign, from its improbable origins to its messy aftermath."

The Fort Worth Civil War Round Table congratulates Dr. Kyle Sinisi on his excellent book and for being selected the 2015 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award Winner. The Award will be presented to Dr. Sinisi on January 12, 2016.

Linda Barnickel Wins 2013 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for her Book "Milliken's Bend: A Civil War Battle in History and Memory"

Linda Barnickel Wins 2013 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for her Book

Linda Barnickel of Nashville, Tennessee has been selected as the winner of the 2013 A. M. Pate Award in Civil War History. The Pate Award is presented each year by the Fort Worth Civil War Round Table to the new book that represents the best original research in Civil War history focusing on the far Western theater of the war - commonly called the Trans-Mississippi. The Award winner is selected by an independent committee. It will be presented at the January 14, 2014 meeting of the Fort Worth Civil War Round Table.

The book focuses on the Battle at Milliken s Bend, Louisiana, where a Union force composed predominantly of former slaves met their Confederate adversaries in a short but bloody engagement. This battle received some initial widespread attention but soon drifted into obscurity. In Milliken s Bend, Linda Barnickel uncovers the story of this long-forgotten and highly controversial battle.

The fighting at Milliken s Bend occurred in June 1863, about fifteen miles north of Vicksburg on the west bank of the Mississippi River, where a brigade of Texas Confederates attacked a Federal outpost. Most of the Union defenders had been slaves less than two months before. The new African American recruits fought well, despite their minimal training, and Milliken s Bend helped prove to a skeptical northern public that black men were indeed fit for combat duty. After the battle, accusations swirled that Confederates had executed some prisoners including white officers and black soldiers. The charges eventually led to a congressional investigation and contributed to the suspension of prisoner exchanges between North and South.

Barnickel's well researched account not only gives a thorough explanation of the battle but also covers the implications of Milliken s Bend upon the war as a whole. The battle contributed to southerners increasing fears of slave insurrection and heightened their anxieties about emancipation. In the North, it helped foster a commitment to allow free blacks and former slaves to take part in the war. And for African Americans, both free and enslaved, Milliken s Bend symbolized their commitment to the war effort.

Reviews of the book have been very favorable including this from Richard G. Lowe author of "Walker's Texas Division: Greyhounds of the Trans-Mississippi"

"Linda Barnickel's Millikens Bend is by far the fullest treatment of that vicious and momentous little battle on the Mississippi River levee near Vicksburg. This detailed account examines antebellum race relations in the home states of the soldiers, growing antislavery sentiment in the free states, the battle itself and the ways in which northerners and southerners have remembered (or forgotten) the conflict in the decades since 1863. Based on deep research in primary and secondary sources, this book gives the story of the African-American enlisted men at Milliken's Bend the attention in deserves and offers readers sound and fair-minded judgments of the evidence."

and this from Andrew Wagenhofer of 'Civil War Books and Authors:'

"Linda Barnickel's Milliken's Bend finally gives the battle and the men that fought it their proper due. It truly was a small battle with significant consequences, among them an inspiring effect on black recruitment in the North, a compelling reason for white Union soldiers and civilians to reevaluate their racial prejudices, and a prominent role in the breakdown of the prisoner exchange system. This study is an exhaustively researched gem and a model for future combined battle and memory studies."

Linda Barnickel is an archivist and freelance writer with master's degrees from the University of Wisconsin - Madison and The Ohio State University. Passionate about discovering the hidden and fascinating stories of history, she is interested in local history, military history, oral history, and the cultural power of archives. And is a deserving winner of the 2013 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History.

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John R. Lundberg Wins 2012 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for "Granbury's Brigade: Diehard Western Confederates"

John R. Lundberg Wins 2012 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for

The 2012 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History will be presented to John R. Lundberg at the January 8, 2013 Dinner Meeting of the Fort Worth Civil War Round Table for his book "Granbury's Texas Brigade: Diehard Western Confederates." The book combines extensive original research and thoughtful analysis to provide a deeper understanding of this important fighting force of Texans.

Early in the War Granbury's Texas Brigade suffered defeat at Fort Donelson, Arkansas Post and Vicksburg. A combination of poor leadership and the fact that many of the men were forced to serve as "dismounted cavalry" had a negative effect on the unit. Many of the Brigade returned home while others were imprisoned in Northern camps. Lundberg is able to show that a large percentage of the returnees enlisted in units back in Texas. Under better leadership the balance of the Brigade fought well and earned their reputation as one of the best units in the Confederate Army. His book is an excellent study of the process that Texas went through in their support of the Confederate cause.

Richard McCaslin, the winner of last year's Pate Award, had this to say about the book:

"This is the first detailed, analytical history of the brigade, and as such it more than pays homage to the memory of these diehard Texans. The author mixes extensive research with strong opinions to provide thoughtful insights for both laymen and scholars. He thus places the history of Granbury's Brigade squarely within the historical debate over such issues as Confederate command in the West, desertion, and Confederate nationalism, to name but a few well-considered topics."

And Andrew Wagenhofer of Civil War Books and Authors concluded his favorable review of the book with these comments:

"'Granbury's Texas Brigade' is a well researched and thoughtful military and social history study. Author John Lundberg not only describes how the brigade conducted battles but why they fought so well and for so long. One of the finest combat formations in the western theater has finally been accorded the coverage and quality of scholarship it deserves."

Please join me on January 8th for the presentation of the 2012 Pate Award to John Lundberg. He will also be presenting on the subject of his book. See you then!

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Richard B. McCaslin Wins 2011 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for "Fighting Stock: John S. 'Rip' Ford of Texas"

Richard B. McCaslin Wins 2011 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award in Civil War History for

Richard B. McCaslin is the 2011 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award winner for his book "Fighting Stock: John S. 'Rip' Ford of Texas." The Pate Award is presented each year by the Fort Worth Civil War Round Table for what is judged to be the best new book on Civil War history in the Trans-Mississippi theater. A committee of members of the Round Table serve as judges. The objective of the award is to promote original scholarship and research in this area.

"Fighting Stock" is a carefully researched, well-written biography of the "larger than life" 19th Century Texan - "Rip" Ford. It not only covers Ford's identity as a Texas Ranger, participant in the Mexican War and Civil War hero but the book also gives a good account of Ford's other personnas as physician, lawyer, newspaperman and politician.

Here is what others say about the book:

"McCaslin's biography of Ford ranks among the best manuscripts I have reviewed in many years. The research is extraordinarily broad, the writing clear, the organization solid and the identification of key themes in Ford's life well-chosen. Perhaps more important, the author portrays his subject sympathetically, without drifting into hagiography. . . . A legendary Texan, Ford now has the biography he deserves."
- Robert Wooster, Regents Professor of History, Texas A & M University - Corpus Christi

". . . in telling Ford's story, McCaslin takes the reader through many of the most important events in the history of Texas during its formative period, and thus satisfies two key criteria for a successful and satisfying biography: a clear sense of the subject and a rich picture of the age in which he lived."
- Andrew R. Graybill, Associate Professor of History, University of Nebraska

"Richard McCaslin's Fighting Stock is a superb addition to TCU Press's The Texas Biography Series, admirably fulfilling the series dictate of examining a subject's life in full. So much of Civil War biography sandwiches the war years with weak bookends, but McCaslin's look at Ford, while acknowledging the paramount importance of that time, recognizes that the 1861-65 period comprises a brief interlude in a long and eventful life. Both Civil War specialists and those with a much broader interest in Texas history will find much to admire in this volume. "
- Andrew Wagenhofer, Editor, Civil War Books and Authors

Richard McCaslin is a professor of History at the University of North Texas. He is also the author of "Tainted Breeze: The Great Hanging at Gainesville, Texas, October 1862" which won the Tullis Prize. He has also written "Lee in the Shadow of Washington'" which was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and won the Slatten Award and the Laney Prize.

The Pate Award will be presented at the January 10th meeting of the Fort Worth Civil War Round Table. The award presentation will be followed by a talk by the author on the subject of his book. Copies of "Fighting Stock" will be available for purchase and for signing by Dr. McCaslin.

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2010 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award Winner - "Fire in the Cane Field: The Federal Invasion of Louisiana and Texas, January 1861-1863" by Donald S. Frazier

2010 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award Winner -

Fire in the Cane Field by Donald S. Frazier has been selected as the 2010 A. M. Pate, Jr. Award Winner. The book is the first in a planned 4-volume series on the history of the Civil War in Louisiana and parts of Texas.

"Fire in the Cane Field" focuses on the first two years of the War including the fall of New Orleans in April of 1862. It includes a great deal of background information on the political and military situation in Louisiana and Texas and gives the reader a clear picture of this era. It also covers, in detail, the military activities in the 9 months following the fall of New Orleans and ends with the recapture of Galveston by the forces under General John Magruder.

This is a well-researched, beautifully written history. Numerous, well-designed and presented maps make the action easy to follow. It is a must addition to any Civil War book collection.

Donald S. Frazier is a Professor of History at McMurry University in Abilene, Texas. He is the author of several books of the Trans-Mississippi sector of the Civil War - including "Blood and Treasure: Confederate Empire in the Southwest." He received the first Pate Award presented in 2004 for this book.

In addition to his teaching and writing Frazier has been very involved in a variety of heritage and cultural tourism projects, including consulting on the development of three museums, two research centers, a Mexican War battlefield, work on Civil War and frontier heritage trails in Texas, New Mexico and Louisiana, and work on historical projects in Europe and Mexico. He is also the President and Chief Executive Officer of the McWhiney Foundation.

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