As edited by his grandson, John Holmes Jenkins, III, this first hand account of early days in the Lone Star state, the Republic of Texas, is a record of the incredible dangers and hardships suffered by the settlers in the late 1830's and early 1840's. Jenkins' father was murdered- possibly by indians- when the boy was only ten, and the family was left virtually in his charge. The period was that of a frontier in constant danger not only of marauding, thieving Indians, but of raids which brought massacre and devastation to settlements. The Caddoes, the Comanches, the Cherokees were an ever present threat. The Mexicans, under the leadership of Santa Anna, were determined to recapture their lost regions; and at 13 young Jenkins joined the Texas Army and took part in sporadic outbursts of warfare-Mexican and Indian. And yet the floodtide of emigration continued. These records set straight some of the misconceptions about the ill-starred Mier expedition, the subsequent Santa Fe expedition, and from records of survivors report further on the terrible experiences of captives, their escapes and recapture. No wonder the picture of both Indians and Mexicans in those days is a black one. Final chapters bring together random recollections of people, incidents, sieges and horrors, and the more heartening side of pioneer life with hunting and social gatherings. This is a sturdy homespun record, which contributes its panel to the too sparse source material of early days. Not great literature- but the stuff of which history and literature are comprised.