vi Southwestern Historical Quarterly January A depiction of La Salle's Texas settlement from Carlos Castañeda's Our Catholic Heritage in Texas (volume 1) bearing the misnomer "Fort Saint Louis." Article By Donald E. Chipman and Robert S. Weddle* Introduction hen Christopher Columbus made his first landfall on the fringe of North America, he believed he had reached the East Indies. He therefore called the strange people he met "Indians," a name that came to be applied to all American indigenes. In similar manner, inappropriate names--or names misapplied--have risen all across the Americas. When one of these historical errors arises, it takes on a life of its own, though not without a healthy boost from us historians. Historians, of course, come in all stripes, and so do the myths they espouse. Sometimes the most egregious of them may result from the purest intentions. But there is no denying that others are born of impure motives, of which the most prevalent perhaps is chauvinism--bending history out of shape by falsely linking some major historic episode to one's native province. Mostly, however, such miscues arise from the urgency to provide answers--an explanation, a name, or an opinion--before the facts at hand justify
Southwestern Historical Quarterly – Texas State Historical Association
Published: Dec 11, 2013
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