The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons

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9780486200941: The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons

The time is 1 p.m., May 24, 1869. The place: the Green River portage, in present-day Wyoming. The personnel are ten: Major John W. Powell, one-armed Civil War veteran, later head of the U. S. Geological Survey) and nine geologists, geographers, scouts, and adventurers. Their assignment: to fill in the last white space on the map, to explore the last great unmapped and unknown part of the continental United States.
No man has ever descended the Colorado River — some 1,000 miles cut through impassable badlands. It is known that there are other rivers in the area, like the Dirty River and the Grand River, but their interrelationships are unknown. What lies along the course of the Colorado as it flows between cliffs 5,000 feet high on either side? Some say that there are waterfalls that dwarf Niagara; others that there are impassable rapids; others that the river flows underground; others say that it is a smooth placid stream, lined by horizon-reaching fields of wild wheat. No one knows, not even the Indians.
Major Powell wrote the account of this remarkable expedition, and his narrative is one of the great classics of exploration, as thrilling as the feat itself. As we follow Powell's journal (expanded for publication), we find the ten men sailing through wild waters, momentarily expecting rapids around the next bend; and finding rapids, throwing out drag anchors, while one advanced boat tries to find through-flowing channels. We see mutiny, as three men refuse to face the perils any longer and desert — to be massacred by the hostile Indians. Famine — the beans are sprouting, the apples are fermenting, and the flour has gone moldy. Yet six men finally emerged, after 95 days of peril and a new continent of experience was recorded.
This is the only uncut version of Powell's narrative that has been printed in the many years. It even includes the full text of the later 1870 expedition along the Uinta, where Powell rediscovered the Pueblo Indians. It also contains Powell's later reflections on the expedition, omitted in other editions.

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About the Author:

John Wesley Powell (1834-1902) was a professor of geology and director of the U.S. Geological Survey.

Wallace Stegner was born in 1909 in Lake Mills, Iowa. The son of Scandinavian immigrants, he traveled with his parents and brother all over the West-to North Dakota, Washington, Saskatchewan, Montana, and Wyoming-before settling in Salt Lake City in 1921. Many of the landscapes he encountered in his peripatetic youth figure largely in his work, as do characters based on his stern father and athletic, outgoing brother. Stegner received most of his education in Utah, graduating from the University in 1930. He furthered his education at the University of Iowa, where he received a master's and a doctoral degree. He married Mary Stuart Page in 1934, and for the next decade the couple followed Wallace's teaching career-to the University of Wisconsin, Harvard, and eventually to Stanford University, where he founded the creative writing program, and where he was to remain until his retirement in 1971. A number of his creative writing students have become some of today's most well respected writers, including Wendell Berry, Thomas McGuane, Raymond Carver, Edward Abbey, Robert Stone, and Larry McMurty.

Throughout his career and after, Stegner's literary output was tremendous. His first novel, Remembering Laughter, was published in 1937. By the time of his death in 1993 he had published some two dozen works of fiction, history, biography, and essays. Among his many literary prizes are the Pulitzer Prize for Angle of Repose (1971) and the National Book Award for The Spectator Bird (1976). His collection of essays, Where the Bluebird Sings to the Lemonade Springs (1992), was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle award.

Although his fiction deals with many universal themes, Stegner is primarily recognized as a writer of the American West. Much of his literature deals with debunking myths of the West as a romantic country of heroes on horseback, and his passion for the terrain and its inhabitants have earned him the title 'The Dean of Western Letters'. He was one of the few true Men of Letters in this generation. An historian, essayist, short story writer and novelist, as well as a leading environmental writer. Although always connected in people's minds with the West, he had a long association with New England. Many short stories and one of his most successful novels, Crossing to Safety, are set in Vermont, where he had a summer home for many years. Another novel, The Spectator Bird, takes place in Denmark.

An early environmentalist, he actively championed the region's preservation and was instrumental-with his now-famous 'Wilderness Letter'-in the passage of the 1964 Wilderness Act. Honest and straightforward, educated yet unpretentious, cantankerous yet compassionate, Wallace Stegner was an enormous presence in the American literary landscape, a man who wrote and lived with ferocity, energy, and integrity.

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Powell, J.W.
Verlag: Dover Publications 1961 (1961)
ISBN 10: 0486200949 ISBN 13: 9780486200941
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Buchbeschreibung Dover Publications 1961, 1961. geringe äußere Gebrauchsspuren. Gewicht in Gramm: 550. Artikel-Nr. 20902

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Powell, J. W.
Verlag: Dover Publications, Inc, New York
ISBN 10: 0486200949 ISBN 13: 9780486200941
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Buchbeschreibung Dover Publications, Inc, New York. Paperback. 8° no year. 400 Seiten. Paperback. Sprache: Englisch, nice copy. Für unsere Schweizer Kunden : Konto auch in der Schweiz vorhanden (PostFinance) 655 Gramm. Buch. Artikel-Nr. A20366

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