361 CHRONICLESnUnited States and Mexico. This isnfollowed by a three-chapter descriptionnof the civil and criminal legal structurenof California both as actually practicednand as viewed from the local level.nNext he details how Anglo-Americansnin California were treated by the law.nThese sections will be of considerableninterest to historians.nThe third part of the book deals withnthe conflicts between Anglo and Hispanicnlegal traditions which causednforeigners to be hostile to the Mexicannsystem as it was practiced in California.nIn the final section of the book,nLangum reviews the ways in whichnforeigners, who usually were contemptuousnof the legal environment in California,nhandled their legal affairs in thisnremote Mexican province which wasnwithout lawyers. It is the last twonsections which will be of most interestnto lawyers.nIn each section of the volume, thenauthor cites numerous cases to supportnhis contentions. As one who hasnworked with documents from the Hispanicnperiod of Southwestern history, Inapplaud the tenacity of research thatnwas necessary before this volume couldnbe written.nLangum argues that the law in Californianduring the Mexican era wasninefficient but not corrupt, that it wasnneither an instrument of power nor ofnsocial change. Rather the civil law andnthe legal environment in Californianwere designed to conciliate disputingnparties — to restore harmony and healnthe breach in the community andnbetween the parties involved in anyndispute. Where conciliation was impossible,ncommunity pressure rathernthan political force (i.e., a sheriff, writs,netc.) was the instrument which compellednadherence to a judicial resolution.nDetermining disputed facts, settlingnthe matter of right and wrong, evenncompensating victims — all were secondarynto achieving a reconciliationnthat hopefully involved face-saving onnall sides. In short, the Mexican civilnlegal system was designed to preventnlitigation. The words of Jose Febrero, anleading Mexican jurist writing in 1851,nshow this clear intent—and perhapsnshould be emblazoned above the doorsnof our present courts:nThe evils that lawsuits causensociety, diminishing the fortunesnof families and promotingnprivate disputes andninterminable discussions, arendeterred through our laws bynthe beneficial object of securingntheir prevention in their origin.nThus it is that it has beennprudently prescribed as anrequired procedure to initiatenlawsuits, that an act benperformed through which meansnauthority interposes its oflicenand attempts with discreetnobservations to conciliate thenspirit of the litigants, proposingnto them some means ofnagreement and exhorting themnto amiably compromise theirndifferences.nJudge Wapner could not have said itnbetter.nIn California, criminal justice involvednan arrest, an investigation tondetermine guilt, and then a communitynconsensus to prescribe a punishmentnthat rarely was the same as that metednout to others committing the identicalnoffense. And the alcalde who arrested,ninvestigated, and sentenced was somewhatnanalogous to a combination sheriff,nmayor, and judge.nAmericans complained that this procedurendeprived them of prompt bail, antrial by jury in which accusers werenconfronted, and a separation of judicialnand executive functions. Moreover,nAmericans of the years 1821-1846nwere too individualistic to appreciatensuch a system; they called it inefficientnand slow — which it was. Yet a closenstudy of all extant criminal dockets innCalifornia shows that Americans (andnEnglishmen) were not singled out fornharsher punishments than Mexicanndefendants.nThus the conflict in California, innLangum’s words, “was between thentraditional values and the languidnprocedures of a pre-industrial, pastoralnpeople and the atomistic, individualistnenergies of those in the very throes ofnthe Industrial Revolution.” The Mexicannlegal system in California betweenn1821 and 1846 urged alcaldes to makendecisions in both criminal and civilncases according to their own judgmentnof what was right. Almost invariablynsuch decisions reflected communitynwishes and mores. The intent was tonnnrestore harmony, avoid litigation, andnreconcile people to living togethernpeacefully. The Californios respectednthis system, believed in its legitimacy,nand obeyed its decrees.nAmericans, on the other hand, didnnot respect this system, thought itnlacked legitimacy, and criticized it continuously.nAmericans wanted certaintynand predictability in the law. Theirnindustrial and commercial interests demandednfixed legal rules known innadvance to all. Anyone investing largenamounts of capital as well as time innrational planning wanted propertynrights to be recognized, exact, andnenforced in an evenhanded way thatntook no note of individual differences.nOne of the foremost merchants innnorthern California was Thomas OlivernLarkin. He lived in Monterey andnfrom 1843 to 1846 served as Americannconsul. Thus he made frequent reportsnto Washington of conditions in Californianand was a regular critic of the legalnsystem there. Then came the Americannconquest, followed quickly by thenintroduction of the common law,nAmerican courts, and endless litigation.nIn 1856 Larkin would recall ofnthe Mexican era, with its different legalntradition, “Halcyon days they were.nWe shall not enjoy there [sic] likenagain.”nOdie Faulk is the author of Arizona:nA Short History (University of OklahomanPress) and of other standardnvolumes of Southwestern history.nMolder of Americanby E. Christian KopffnUncommon Clay: The Life andnWorks of Augustus Saint-Gaudensnby Burke Wilkinson, San Diego:nHarcourt Brace Jovanovich.nNineteenth-century America was annexplosively creative country. It openednup new territories to cultivation andnpoured forth a cornucopia of technicalninventions. Its literature ranged fromnHawthorne to Mark Twain, from Whitmannto Stephen Foster, and its artnincluded the architecture of McKim,nMead and White and the sculpture ofnAugustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907).nSaint-Gaudens’s was an art at oncenoutrageously, extravagantly Americann