Sixteen South Texas women stand proudly in the public mural Mujeres a Través del Tiempo by Arnold Gonzáles Sr. housed on the campus of Texas A&M University–Kingsville. These women are pioneers; they are ranchers, educators, artists, politicians, and community activists; they are general and specific, known and unknown.
Inspired by the mural, this study assumes the biographer’s task: to fill in the gaps of knowledge between the figures as seen and the lives they lived, with their trials and triumphs. Assembled by editor Susan L. Roberson, this collection features essays on the lives of the women who are depicted in the mural, women who live or lived in the South Texas region between the Nueces River and the Rio Grande, particularly Kleberg, Kenedy, and Nueces counties. Situated near the boundary between Mexico and Texas, these women navigated more than geographic borders as they tested their place in economic, political, and artistic arenas long recognized as male domains.