- May 26 & 27 - All libraries CLOSED for Memorial Day
Like most Americans, I knew little about the Mexican-American War (1846 -1848), and so I sought Eagles and Empire to learn more about this important but frequently overlooked chapter of American history. If proof of impartiality is that you offend everyone equally, David A. Clary must be one of the most impartial historians around. From the duplicitous American government to the Mexican government’s callousness towards its own citizens, from comic-opera figure Santa Ana to the American volunteer army’s refusal to be disciplined, this is a tale in which everybody comes out looking deplorable. And no one receives a less flattering portrayal than the Texas Rangers, who, if even half of Clary’s indictments are true, did not start out as honorable lawmen, and who might well prefer that this chapter of history should remain obscure. The one faction that does come out of Clary’s account with their reputation largely intact is the American officer corps, many of whom went on to become household names in the Civil War. Clary’s Eagles and Empire is an important read, but not always a pleasant one.