2008 Frederick W. Beinecke Senior Fellow lecture
The Risky Business of Editing Historical Documents: Letters from the U.S.-Mexico Boundary Survey, 1849-1854
David Weber speaks about the project he is completing this year on George Clinton Gardner, a young man who served on the U.S.-Mexico Boundary Survey from San Diego to the mouth of the Rio Grande between 1849 and 1853. Weber will place his workin the larger context of editing historical documents, a risky business for historians in the academy. Weber's forthcoming book on this subject of George Clinton Gardner will be titled: Fiasco: George Clinton Gardner's Letters from the U.S.-Mexico Boundary Survey, 1849-1854.
David J. Weber is the Robert and Nancy Dedman Professor of History at SMU in Dallas and directs the William P. Clements Center for Southwest Studies. One of America's most honored historians, he is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and two governments have given him the highest honor they bestow on foreigners: King Juan Carlos of Spain named him to membership in the Real Orden de Isabel la Catolica, the Spanish equivalent of a knighthood, and Mexico named him to the Orden Mexicana del guila Azteca (the Order of the Aztec Eagle). His many books include: The Mexican Frontier, 1821-1846: The American Southwest Under Mexico (University of New Mexico Press, l982);Richard H. Kern: Expeditionary Artist in the Far Southwest, 1848-1853 (University of New Mexico Press & the Amon Carter Museum, 1985); Myth and the History of the Hispanic Southwest: Essays by David J. Weber (University of New Mexico Press, 1988); The Spanish Frontier in North America (Yale University Press, 1992); Barbaros: Spaniards and Their Savages in the Age of Enlightenment (Yale University Press, 2005) An additional forthcoming project titled First Impressions: A Reader's Journey to Iconic Places in American Southwest offers an unusual point of entry into the Southwestern past: first-hand accounts written by early residents and visitors.