“Petra Kenedy is . . . one of the more significant and intriguing Texas women of the nineteenth century . . . the manuscript fulfills a continuing need for more historical works on South Texas. . . . ”
--Paula Mitchell Marks, Associate Professor at St. Edward’s University
". . . a valuable, carefully researched, engaging chronicle of legendary South Texas pioneers in the 19th century and their legacy, which continues to shape the state."
--Texas Books in Review
"If it weren't footnoted, Petra's Legacy might be mistaken for soaring fiction. It is chockablock with crooked politics, cattle rustlers, land fraud, warfare, and enough illicit sex to populate South Texas courtrooms for generations."
--Dallas Morning News
"The book's production values are first-rate. . . One hopes that Petra's Legacy will now inspire a similar, well-researched, full-length adult study of this important South Texas matriarch. . . book exemplifies women's studies at its finest. For those considering research or a career in women's history, Petra's Legacy provides an excellent signpost on how to proceed."
--Southwestern Historical Quarterly
“In the harsh region of Spanish Texas along the banks of the lower Rio Grande, much of the success at settlement hinged on family and community. The women governed the outcome measured against the great obstacles of unrest, war, and disease. Their equal legal status also gave them an empowerment other pioneer women did not enjoy. The life and times of Petra Resendez Vela de Vidal Kenedy stands as a much needed study to broaden our understanding of the women of this era and a family’s survival and success in the Wild Horse Desert.”
--Mary Margaret McAllen Amberson, Independent Historian
"Petra's Legacy provides a sweeping record of one of the wealthiest of Texas families and the Catholic legacy left by Petra Vela de Kenedy through her children. It is the saga of Mifflin Kennedy, partner to Richard King, as told through the eyes of his wife, Petra Vela. As a daughter of a Mexican rancher and mother of more than a dozen children, Petra Vela de Kenedy became the matriarch of a Catholic family whose presence is still felt in South Texas today. Her epic story, and that of her husband Mifflin, flows through the violent years of the Mexican-American War, the Anglo settlement of South Texas, the bloody but highly profitable Civil War, and the building of Texas during the last half of the nineteenth century. This is a must-read for everyone who is enthralled by the histories of the families of South Texas.”
--Carolina Castillo Crimm, Sam Houston State University
“Much more than a recitation of the principal incidents in a courageous woman’s life.”
--Wild West History Association
“The book embraces a wealth of primary materials, including letters and diaries, so that the family of long ago almost becomes our family and our history, however distant we may be socially, politically, geographically – or financially. The authors write with warmth and intimacy, complementing their pages with numerous photos. Although written by women, about a very special woman, there is no doubt that Petra’s legacy will have the same appeal to readers of either sex.”
--Southwestern American Literature
“Much of this text reads like an adventure story, since for many years the Kenedys and Kings had to protect their holdings from the raids of Mexican bandits . . . . Their study, including numerous photographs of significant persons, has provided a valuable addition to the history of South Texas.”
“Petra’s Legacy provides a sweeping record of one of the wealthiest of Texas families and the Catholic legacy left by Petra Vela de Kennedy through her children-an epic story, a must-read for Texas history.”