Bad Hand: A Biography of General Ranald S. Mackenzie

Overview


A Civil War hero, victorious Indian fighter and eventual madman, General Ranald S. Mackenzie's fascinating life, his brilliant accomplishments, and his descent into madness are brought to life in a complete and thoroughly researched biography that reestablishes his importance in the history of Texas and the United States. Foreword by Stan Hoig.
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Overview


A Civil War hero, victorious Indian fighter and eventual madman, General Ranald S. Mackenzie's fascinating life, his brilliant accomplishments, and his descent into madness are brought to life in a complete and thoroughly researched biography that reestablishes his importance in the history of Texas and the United States. Foreword by Stan Hoig.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This is a well-researched, gracefully written biography of one of America's foremost Indian fighters. Colonel Ranald S. Mackenzie (1840-1889) led the Fourth Cavalry for 12 years, fashioning it into the most formidable assault force in the U.S. Army of its time. Though his battles were unspectacular, they played a vital role in protecting settlers by subduing Indian tribes. Robinson ( Frontier Forts in Texas ) describes how Mackenzie learned to ``think Indian,'' turning their own war-making methods against them. An ill-tempered man with impossibly high standards, he suffered a nervous breakdown shortly after his promotion to brigadier general in 1883, was declared insane by an Army board and institutionalized in New York at the age of 43. Robinson rejects the common theory that Mackenzie's mind was destroyed by syphilis, arguing that he suffered from the cumulative effects of wounds, stress and fatigue. Today his malady would probably be diagnosed as post-traumatic stress disorder. Photos. (Apr.)
Library Journal
In this, his third book on Texas military topics, Robinson assays the biography of Mackenzie, whom he believes to be underappreciated as an able commander during the U.S. Army's wars with the Plains Indians. Robinson makes his case very persuasively, and students of the Indian wars will welcome his approach. Mackenzie was not a charismatic or articulate figure, and Robinson fleshes out his account with a liberal use of anecdotes to illustrate military life on the Plains. For the nonspecialist, this portion of the book is more interesting than the accounts of Mackenzie's comings and goings. The campaigns described occur almost entirely in Texas, which makes the book a good choice for Texas public libraries in addition to its academic audience.-- Fritz Buckallew, Univ. of Central Oklahoma Lib., Edmond
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781880510025
  • Publisher: McWhiney Foundation
  • Publication date: 4/4/1993
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 420
  • Sales rank: 649,327
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.93 (d)

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