John Harris Rogers (1863?1930) served in Texas law enforcement for more than four decades, as a Texas Ranger, Deputy and U.S. Marshal, city police chief, and in the private sector as a security agent. He is recognized in history as one of the legendary "Four Captains" of the Ranger force that helped make the transition from the Frontier Battalion days into the 20th century, yet no one has fully researched and written about his life. Paul N. Spellman now presents the first full-length biography of this enigmatic man.
During his years as a Ranger, Rogers observed and participated in the civilizing of West Texas. As the railroads moved out in the 1880s, towns grew up too quickly, lawlessness was the rule, and the Rangers were soon called in to establish order. Rogers was nearly always there. Likewise he participated in some of the most dramatic and significant events during the closing years of the Frontier Battalion: the Brown County fence cutting wars; the East Texas Conner Fight; the El Paso/Langtry Prizefight; the riots during the Laredo Quarantine; and the hunts for Hill Loftis and Gregorio Cortez. Rogers was the lawman who captured Cortez to close out one of the most infamous chases in Texas history. Rogers was wont to use the Bible as often as his six-gun, both with dramatic effect. That and his constant devotion to his family set him apart from the usual lawmen of that era. He was a man of the law and a man of God, a rare combination at the turn of the century.
The book is published by University of North Texas Press.
©2003 Paul N. Spellman (P)2015 Redwood Audiobooks
"Spellman offers a narrative biography that is exceedingly well crafted... It is a must read for scholars and laymen alike." (Journal of the West)
"Spellman's biography will be of great significance to Ranger historians and will appeal to both academic and general listeners." (Harold J. Weiss, Jr., Texas Ranger historian)
I am an avid eclectic reader.
Paul N. Spellman is professor of history and division chair at Wharton Junior College. He has written a number of books on the history of Texas. Spellman published the biography of Rogers in 2008.
John Harris Rogers (1863-1930) served in Texas law enforcement for 40 years as a Texas Ranger, United States Marshall, City police Chief and in the private sector as a security agent. Rogers is famous as one of the legendary “Four Captains” of the Texas Rangers that helped made the transition from the frontier Battalion days into the twentieth century. The “Four Captains” were as follows: Bill McDonald, John H. Rogers, John Brook and John Hughes.
Spellman says that Rogers had a quiet manner and preferred to work behind the scenes. According to Spellman, Rogers was known as the bible carrying lawman. The author tells of Rogers’ role in some of the famous events of the Texas Rangers such as: the Brown County Fence Cutting Wars, The East Texas Conner Fight, the riots during the Laredo Quarantine and the hunts for Hill Loftus and Rogers’ capture of the infamous Gregario Cortes.
The book is well written and thoroughly researched and is easy to read. Charles Curtis narrated the book.
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