Author Archives: Mustang

About Mustang

US Marine (Retired), historian, writer.

Sally Scull: Mean as a snake

One axiom of the old west was that good-hearted cowboys were as mythical as unicorns.  The saying probably does some injustice to stockmen, cowhands, ranchers, and trail drivers.  The truth is that the term cowboy had, at one time, the … Continue reading

Posted in Civil War, Pioneers, Society, Texas | 2 Comments

U.S. Marshal C. P. Dake

All we know about this man’s family is that (a) they were Canadian, (b) they moved to New York when their son was still a child, and (c) they demonstrated one heck of an imagination when they named their son … Continue reading

Posted in Arizona Territory, History, U.S. Marshals | 4 Comments

Old West vs. Hollywood West

What most of us learned about the Old West, as kids, was what we saw at the cinema and on early black and white television.  It was great fun.  In my day, we all looked forward to the Saturday matinees … Continue reading

Posted in American Southwest, Gunfights and such, History, Kansas, New Mexico, Westward Expansion | 1 Comment

The U.S./Mexican Border

As U.S. law enforcement continues its struggle against Mexican smugglers and murderers, (popularly referred to as the drug cartels), it may be useful to note that this struggle has been going on since around the mid-1800s.  If practice makes perfect, … Continue reading

Posted in American Southwest, Gunfights and such, Mexican American War, Mexican Border War, Texas Rangers | 3 Comments

The Hyde Park Gunfight

Historian Eduardo Obregón Pagán’s book Valley of the Guns: The Pleasant Valley War and the Trauma of Violence emphasizes the post-traumatic stress among survivors of old west gunfights, hostile Indian attacks, and lawmen who were quick on the trigger.  I … Continue reading

Posted in Gunfights and such, History, Kansas, Texas | Leave a comment

Cherokee Blood Bath

Some Background On 28 May 1830, President Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act into law.  The Act authorized the President of the United States to grant unsettled lands west of the Mississippi River in exchange for Indian lands within … Continue reading

Posted in American Indians, Cherokee Nation, History, Indian Territory | 1 Comment

The Acadians

Les Acadiens Giovanni da Verrazzano (1485-1528) was a Florentine explorer of North America who, at the time, was in the service of the King of France (one that hardly anyone has ever heard about: Francis I[1]).  Verrazzano’s sixteenth-century map of … Continue reading

Posted in Colonial America, History | 6 Comments

An Oklahoma Rose

Among the reasons I enjoy history is that it provides an interesting insight into the lives of people who have gone before, provides us with examples of morality (or a lack of it), and it gives some perspectives about our … Continue reading

Posted in American Frontier, Society | 5 Comments

The American Frontier

Some background Human migration could be the most important factor in understanding the development of North America.  While it is true that the story of humankind is one of migration, our American story began when people decided to risk their … Continue reading

Posted in American Frontier, Colonial America, History, New France, New Spain, Pioneers, Society, Westward Expansion | 5 Comments

The Ambushers

An ambush (also, ambuscade) is a long-established military tactic in which combatants take advantage of concealment and the element of surprise to attack unsuspecting enemies from concealed positions, i.e., from dense underbrush, from wooded areas, or from behind hilltops.  Another … Continue reading

Posted in California, Civil War, History, Little Dixie | 3 Comments