The Bookshelf, The Parlor, The Young Texas Reader, and the Monthly

The Texas Bookshelf is different from the The Texas Parlor, . The Texas Parlor carries "general" bookish information and non-book information and even different Texana news and notes of use to the bibliographically challenged and other nosey folks intersted in historical, literary, and cultural observations. Will's Texana Monthly may carry material from either blog, but extends itself beyond those, especially for longer compilations or treatments. The Monthly, the Bookshelf and the Parlor are all companions. So, is the Young Texas Reader which specialized on books and such things for the youngest to the teenagers.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Corpus Christi - Williams

Corpus Christi      Corpus Christi. by Scott Williams. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2009. Paperback, many b&w photographs, 6"x9", 128 pages (thicker paper than Arcadia's usual production), ISBN: 9780738558530 $21.99
Scott Williams, UT journalism graduate and long-time writer on Texas and Corpus Christi, has joined with the Corpus Christi Public Library and produced this bustling item in Arcadia's "Images of America Series" of photographic books just chock-full of photos.  And folks of the "Sparkling City by the Sea" will enjoy to extra boon of a packet of picture postcards attached to the book.  This locale's European heritage stretches back to the bay's discovery by Pineda in 1519 as his expedition sketched the first shoreline map of Texas and the 1734 Spanish Fort Lipantitlan.  The later push came with Henry Kinney who started a trading post there in the 1830's, and his Kinney Ranch following the Spanish tradition.
The photos progress from the "Prelude to Paradise, 1839-1899," to "Rising from the Dust, 1900-1925," "Ushering in Prosperity, 1926-1937," "The Military Comes Marching In, 1938-1961," and finally "Modern Era Growth, 1962-2000."
Although its early period of being a sleepy little coastal community is aptly described (even its involvement in the Civil War is largely limited to the 1862 Battle of Corpus Christi Bay), cattle ranches, coastal trade, bridges, railroads, commercial and sport fishing, tourism, and of course, Army & Naval installations and the awl bidness offered steady incentives to growth while hurricanes weeded out the faint hearted.  Now the "Body of Christ" city is one of the few large Texas cities that retains a genuine, original personality.  I've always enjoyed the Texas Library Association and Texas State Historical Association conventions there.
My favorite photo from the first chapter is an 1876 crew of surveyors with their equipment and attending youngsters in training, all be-hatted but not a Stetson in the gang.
Likely the post prominent house of its turn-of-the-century time was the residence of Henrietta King (yes, King ranch folks), and the photo below that of the 1910 Sinton Ladies Club in their best, again all be-hatted but not a Stetson in the flock, demonstrates the attraction to nearby places.  A photo proves snow fell in 1924 and another shows the KKK rose in 1925.
The rise of Tejano influence is signaled by photos of Hector Garcia and Gabe Lozano, Sr.  And James B. McCulllough, their first African American postmaster, is featured.
Oh! And don't forget the postcard packet.


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