The Maxwell Land Grant and the Conflict Over Land in the American West, 1840-1900
By (author) Maria E. Montoya
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Translating Property by Maria E. Montoya
Book DescriptionAlthough Mexico lost its northern territories to the United States in 1848, battles over property rights and ownership have remained intense. This turbulent, vividly narrated story of the Maxwell Land Grant, a single tract of 1.7 million acres in northeastern New Mexico, shows how contending groups reinterpret the meaning of property to uphold their conflicting claims to land. The Southwest has been and continues to be the scene of a collision between land regimes with radically different cultural conceptions of the land's purpose. We meet Jicarilla Apaches, whose identity is rooted in a sense of place; Mexican governors and hacienda patrons seeking status as New World feudal magnates; 'rings' of greedy territorial politicians on the make; women finding their own way in a man's world; Anglo homesteaders looking for a place to settle in the American West; and, Dutch investors in search of gargantuan returns on their capital. The European and American newcomers all 'mistranslated' the prior property regimes into new rules, to their own advantage and the disadvantage of those who had lived on the land before them. Their efforts to control the Maxwell Land Grant by wrapping it in their own particular myths of law and custom inevitably led to conflict and even violence as cultures and legal regimes clashed.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780520227446
(229mm x 152mm x 25mm)
Imprint: University of California Press
Publisher: University of California Press
Publish Date: 29-Mar-2002
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Maria E. Montoya
Covered Wagon Women, Paperback (March 1999)» View all books by Maria E. Montoya
Presents a collection of primary sources written by women moving west.
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Author Biography - Maria E. Montoya
Maria E. Montoya is Associate Professor of History at the University of Michigan.
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