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Homicide, race, and justice in the American West, 1880-1920

Author: Clare V McKanna
Publisher: Tucson : University of Arizona Press, ©1997.
Edition/Format:   Print book : State or province government publication : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
As a beginning point for actually measuring lethal violence and assessing the administration of justice, here at last is a detailed and well-documented study of homicide in the American West. Comparing data from representative areas - Douglas County, Nebraska; Las Animas County, Colorado; and Gila County, Arizona - this book reveals a level of violence far greater than many historians have believed, even surpassing
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Genre/Form: History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
McKanna, Clare V. (Clare Vernon), 1935-
Homicide, race, and justice in the American West, 1880-1920.
Tucson : University of Arizona Press, ©1997
(OCoLC)666117776
Material Type: Government publication, State or province government publication
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Clare V McKanna
ISBN: 0816517088 9780816517084
OCLC Number: 35317885
Description: xiv, 206 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Contents: 1. Critical Convergences in the American West: The Roots of Lethal Violence --
2. Murder Most Foul: Comparative Homicide Data --
3. Seeds of Destruction: The Black Experience in Omaha, Nebraska --
4. The Violent West: Social Instability in Las Animas County, Colorado --
5. Red versus White: The Apache Experience in Gila County, Arizona --
6. Lethal Violence: An Appraisal.
Responsibility: Clare V. McKanna, Jr.

Abstract:

As a beginning point for actually measuring lethal violence and assessing the administration of justice, here at last is a detailed and well-documented study of homicide in the American West. Comparing data from representative areas - Douglas County, Nebraska; Las Animas County, Colorado; and Gila County, Arizona - this book reveals a level of violence far greater than many historians have believed, even surpassing eastern cities like New York and Boston.

Clashing cultures and transient populations, a boomtown mentality, easy availability of alcohol and firearms: these and many other factors come under scrutiny as catalysts in the violence that permeated the region. By comparing homicide data - including coroner's inquests, indictments, plea bargains, and sentences - across both racial and regional lines, the book also offers persuasive evidence that criminal justice systems of the Old West were weighted heavily in favor of defendants who were white and against those who were African American, Native American, or Mexican. Packed with information, this is a book for students and scholars of western history, social history, criminology, and justice studies. Western history buffs will be captivated by colorful anecdotes about the real West, where guns could and did blaze over anything from love trysts to vendettas to too much foam on the beer.

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