Wednesday, November 9, 2011
1) Hayes, Derek. Historical Atlas of Washington and Oregon. 2011. University of California Press. Hardbound: 240 pages. Price: $39.95 U.S.
SUMMARY: This gorgeous atlas, illustrated throughout with more than 500 colorful images and maps, provides a visually rich and textually engaging history of the states of Oregon and Washington. Derek Hayes brings his enthusiasm and expertise to a full range of topics, beginning with the first inhabitants and tracing the westward expansion, conflict between settlers and Native Americans, and the establishment of the Oregon Trail. We see in vivid images, old maps, and lively text the coming of the railroads and the rapid establishment of the coastal ports, northwest cities and roads, the fur and lumber industries, and the large farms. We also witness the twentieth-century development of the war industries, the establishment of the aviation industry, and the celebratory 1962 Seattle World’s Fair. At once a valuable reference and an exhilarating adventure through history, the Historical Atlas of Washington and Oregon presents readers with a fascinating chronicle of how these proud states came into their own and how they each look toward the future.
RECOMMENDATION: A must have for those interested in the history of these two states!
2) Kirk, Jay. Kingdom Under Glass: A Tale of Obsession, Adventure, and One Man's Quest to Preserve the World's Great Animals. 2011. Picador. Paperback: 387 pages. Price: $18.00 U.S.
SUMMARY: In this epic account of an extraordinary life lived during remarkable times, Jay Kirk follows the adventures of legendary explorer and taxidermist Carl Akeley, who revolutionized taxidermy and environmental conservation and created the famed African Hall at New York’s Museum of Natural History. Akeley risked death time and again in the jungles of Africa as he stalked animals for his dioramas and hobnobbed with outsized personalities of the era, such as Theodore Roosevelt and P. T. Barnum.
RECOMMENDATION: An interesting read, but could have used more than the five photos provided to illustrated the story.