Marc Simmons was called by another writer “one remarkable caballero.” He certainly is. He has been a Wyoming ranch hand, a movie extra with Warner Brothers, a Peace Corps training officer, a horseshoer, and has taught history at the University of New Mexico. Simmons is probably the only professional farrier in the Southwest with a Ph.D. He now lives in Cerrillos, New Mexico in an adobe house he built himself, and concentrates on horses, mules, research, and writing. He is at work on his next book, Trailing the Long-Ears: An Informal History of Mules and Burros in the Southwest.
Manuel Antonio Chaves’ life (1818–1889) straddled three eras of New Mexican history. A Spanish frontiersman, his long career was interwoven with almost every major historical event which occurred during his adult life—the Texan-Santa Fe Expedition, the Mexican War, the Civil War, skirmishes with Utes, Navajos, and Apaches.