Many know Ray and Steven Hanley for their newspaper features and books documenting Arkansas history through postcards. They have now brought Main Street to life through 233 images, many never before published. Views range from the humble, wood-frame-houses-and-muddystreets beginnings of Donaldson in 1908 to the urban glory of Booneville in 2009. In some cases, more recent photos of downtown are juxtaposed with the same scene decades earlier. Main Street Arkansas: The Hearts of Arkansas Cities and Towns-As Portrayed in Postcards and Photographs offers readers a glimpse of an Arkansas that is disappearing amidst the big box stores and strip malls that dot today's landscape. The book sells for $33.95 (cloth) and $19.95 (paper) from Butler Center Books, 100 S. Rock Street, Little Rock, AR, 72201; (501) 320-5716.
Missouri's Sterling Price played an important role in Arkansas's Civil War from its beginning to very near its end. Robert G. Schultz has taken the unfinished narrative of Missouri's Confederate governor, Thomas C. Reynolds, and annotated it to create General Sterling Price and the Confederacy. Quarterly readers might take special interest in Reynolds' views of Price as a leader (his conditional Unionism at the start of the conflict left some, including Reynolds, with doubts about his fervor for the cause), his participation in the battles at Wilson's Creek and Pea Ridge, and his 1864 raid into Missouri. General Sterling Price and the Confederacy sells for $24.95 (paper) from the University of Missouri Press, 2910 LeMone Blvd, Columbia, MO 65201; (573) 882-7641; press.umsystem.edu.
The University of Arkansas Press has published a collection of sixteen essays, Long is the Way and Hard: One Hundred Years of the NAACP, to mark the centennial of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, an organization vital to nearly every aspect of the civil rights struggle. Readers of this journal will take special note of the essay by John Kirk titled "'They Say . . . New York Is Not Worth a D___ to Them': The NAACP in Arkansas, 1918-1971." Edited by Kevern Verney and Lee Sartain, and with a foreword by Adam Fairclough, the volume is priced at $29.95 (paper) and $70.00 (unjacketed cloth), and is available from the University of Arkansas Press, 105 N. McIlroy Ave., Fayetteville, AR 72701; (800) 626-0090.
Blues musicians rarely stayed put, allowing multiple states to lay claim to them. Mississippi natives Robert Johnson, Howlin' Wolf, Sonny Boy Williamson (II), and Big Bill Broonzy, for instance, all spent important moments in their lives and careers in Arkansas. More than Mississippians, then, will welcome William Ferris's rich portrait of his home state, Give My Poor Heart Ease: Voices of the Mississippi Blues. The book includes more than twenty interviews that Ferris conducted and reproduces photographs he took while traveling through Mississippi in the 1960s and 1970s. Tucked in the back of the volume are both a CD and a DVD of original material. …