Michael Ariens proves that no state possesses a richer or more surprising legal history than Texas. In narrative as engaging as it is accessible, he has produced an overarching consideration of Lone Star law and legal culture--something notably missing in other Texas histories.
After taking readers chronologically from early settlement through 1920, Ariens focuses on particular areas of Texas law, including property, family, business, criminal, and civil harms (tort), and on the history of Texas's legal profession itself. Through illuminating and utterly Texan particulars, Ariens helps us understand a place at once southern and western, Spanish and Mexican, republic and state.
[Ariens] clearly explains the multinational legal heritage of Texas, the challenges of the Republic, and the accomplishments of statehood. He surveys a legislative past as well as the judicial heritage that confronted problems of land, water, crime, and industrial revolution amid an agricultural and ranching economy. . . . Texas produced presidents, senators, and representatives for the national political and legal system, but in Texas law, people in local and state politics mattered. Michael Ariens gives the reader a sense of how. --Gordon Morris Bakken, from the foreword
Superbly researched and engagingly written . . . a must-read for everyone seriously interested in Texas legal history. Ariens has produced a volume that even those without a legal background can understand and enjoy. --Michael R. Belknap, Earl Warren Professor, California Western School of Law, and adjunct professor of legal history, University of California, San DiegoContents
Creating Texas Law, 1718û1864
Law and Crises, 1865û1920
Land, Oil, Water, and Sea: The Law of Texas
The Railroad and Other Corporations
Family Law and Cultural Change
The Legal Profession, Legal Education, and the Courts
Criminal Law and Civil Rights
Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, and Civil Law