Earl H. Elam has been conducting historical and ethnohistorical research in Texas for nearly 60 years. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1953 where he served 4 years. He then went on to receive a BA in history from Midwestern University and an MA and PhD in history from the Texas Tech University. He became a history professor at Sul Ross State University in 1971 where he served as History Department Chair (1971-1974), Director of Social Science (1973-1974), Vice President for Academic Affairs (1974-1987), and was the founding director of the Center for Big Bend Studies (1987-1995). He has numerous publications on the history of the Big Bend and the Wichita people and has dedicated much of his life to the discipline. Earl and his wife Eleanor reside in Hillsboro, Texas.