On Sunday, April 29, 2012, the Museum of South Texas History hosts Dr. Richard B. McCaslin as he presents “Rip Ford and Juan Cortina” starting at 2 p.m. To help paint a picture of the dynamic relationship between Ford and Cortina, McCaslin will draw from his book, John S. “Rip” Ford of Texas: Fighting Stock and Dr. Jerry Thompson’s work, Cortina: Defending the Mexican Name in Texas.

Speakers such as McCaslin shed light on border relations during the American Civil War and battles such as the Battle of Palmito Ranch. McCaslin said, “These two men[Ford and Cortina] are often used to argue that the relationship between Anglo and Mexican Texans in the second half of the nineteenth century was antagonistic. In fact, they had a complex relationship that included elements of armed conflict, wary cooperation, and even friendship, reflecting the all-too-human actual interactions of prominent men along the Rio Grande border in a turbulent era.” This will be the first time Dr. McCaslin visits the museum. “I have never been to the Museum of South Texas History, but I am honored to be asked to speak and look forward to seeing the museum for the first time.” Visitors are invited to enjoy a book signing immediately following the program.

Richard B. McCaslin is a professor at the University of North Texas and author ofTainted Breeze: The Great Hanging at Gainesville, Texas, October 1862 (LSU, 1994), which won the Tullis Prize and an AASLH commendation. McCaslin also wrote Lee in the Shadow of Washington (LSU, 2001), which was nominated for a Pulitzer, and received the Laney Prize and Slatten Award. Another of his books,At the Heart of Texas: One Hundred Years of the Texas State Historical Association, 1897-1997 (TSHA, 2007), earned the Award of Merit from the Texas Philosophical Society. McCaslin also produced A Soldier’s Letters to Charming Nellie (U of TN, 2008) and Fighting Stock: John S. “Rip” Ford in Texas (TCU, 2011), which received the Pate Award. Among his other books are The Last Stronghold: The Campaign for Fort Fisher (McWhiney Foundation, 2003), and three volumes in the Portraits of Conflict series (U of Arkansas)–on South Carolina (1994), North Carolina (1997), and Tennessee (2007), which won the Freeman Award.

The Sunday Speaker Series is included in the fee for regular museum admission. FRIENDS of the Museum are admitted free as a benefit of FRIENDships. For information on becoming a FRIEND of the Museum, call 956.383.6911 or visit click here The Museum of South Texas History is located at 200 North Closner Boulevard on the Hidalgo County Courthouse square in downtown Edinburg.