A Story of Evolution. By Charles W. Grimes. (Somerville, New Jersey: The C. P. Hoagland Company, 1937. 266 pp. $2.00)
The author of this informative and highly interesting book has long been a resident of Tulsa, Oklahoma. He is a business man engaged primarily in the oil industry on his own account but well known in civic, political, and educational circles in his adopted city and state. For a number of years he has given scholarly attention to the advancement of the sciences of biology, palaeontology, geology, astronomy and in particular to anthropology, archaeology, and the arts of mankind.
This book is written by a layman for the laity rather than by a professionalist to a scientific audience; therein lies its chief merit. The style and language is easily grasped but it is none the less authoritative in every particular. It is a comprehensive story of life on this planet which culminates in man's cultural development, a study in the universal reign of natural law.
The author is not dogmatic in his statements and makes no attempt to argue his subject in any opposition to religious views. In fact, he approaches the subject from an inspiring point of view as if there be "one far off divine event to which the whole creation moves."
The essential theme of this story outline of evolution is the pre-history of the human race as carried from the dawn of civilization through development of social order, origin of the alphabet and writing, development of morals, transportation, communication, power, pictorial art, music, etc. to the frontiers of current history. It is a book that one reads with delight and appreciation as the whole subject evolves in connected order in the style of John Burroughs and with a substance characteristic of H. G. Wells.
—James H. Gardner.
Anthology of Poetry by Oklahoma Writers. Compiled by Aletha Caldwell Conner. (Oklahoma City: Times Journal Publishing Company, 1936. $2.00).
This volume features Oklahoma's traditions, legends, and historical lore. It is dedicated to the courageous pioneers of Oklahoma, the Eighty-Niners, with a pictured covered wagon, designed by Jean Fay Armstrong, of Chandler.
A varied theme is offered in this second volume of poetry. Dust storms, geology, tax tokens, love of homeland, Indians, patriotism, and appreciation of nature—each clamors for expression in poetic effusion. Beginning with Don Moon, Guthrie poet, we see a rhymed conception of Oklahoma's run for homesteads in "The Great Race." George Riley Toohey of Canton, relates history of this period in "Pioneers of Eighty-Nine." "Song of the Middle West," by Mary Bragg of Norman, and "Awaiting the Mid-day Sun," by S. K. Inney of Guthrie, follow the historical trend. Thomas Hold, Ada attorney, and M. F. Manville, Ada abstracter, each contributes to the collection a touch of his own profession in clever verse form. "The Dust God," by L. L. Hinton of Bartlesville, and "The Dust Storm," by Vola Ruth Martin of Chandler, vividly relate that phase of Oklahoma life.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Check List of Manuscripts in the Edward E. Ayer Collection. Compiled by Ruth Lapham Butler. (Chicago: Newberry Library, 1937. VII+ 295 pp. $5.00).
The Newberry Library of Chicago has made a worthwhile contribution in making available the splendid volume entitled Check List of Manuscripts in the Edward E. Ayer Collection compiled by Ruth Lapham Butler. This check list will enable scholars to see what materials are available in this outstanding collection which is in the custody of the Newberry Library of Chicago. Dr. Butler as custodian of the collection shows a pleasing familiarity with these priceless manuscripts.
Students of the history of the Cherokees will be especially interested in the items which are listed under the name of John Howard Payne.
American scholars are placed under indebtedness to the late Edward E. Ayer because of the painstaking and thoughtful manner in which he collected priceless decuments and other manuscript material. This volume should serve as a guide to other institutions in compiling lists of their holdings. Although there appear to be omissions here and there in the index, on the whole it is quite thorough and should be quite helpful to students.
The Oklahoma Historical Society and its patrons will find much use for this work in the years to come. We are indeed fortunate to be selected as one of the institutions to receive a copy of this edition of five hundred. Dr. Utley and his associate have reason to be proud of the work they have done in making this volume available.
—James W. Moffitt.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.