Stories in Stone: How Geology Influenced Connecticut History and Culture

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In a series of entertaining essays, geoscientist Jelle Zeilinga de Boer describes how early settlers discovered and exploited Connecticut's natural resources. Their successes as well as failures form the very basis of the state's history: Chatham's gold played a role in the acquisition of its Charter, and Middletown's lead helped the colony gain its freedom during the Revolution. Fertile soils in the Central Valley fueled the state's development into an agricultural power house, and iron ores discovered in the western highlands helped trigger its manufacturing eminence. The Statue of Liberty, a quintessential symbol of America, rests on Connecticut's Stony Creek granite. Geology not only shaped the state's physical landscape, but also provided an economic base and played a cultural role by inspiring folklore, paintings, and poems. Illuminated by 50 illustrations and 12 color plates, Stories in Stone describes the marvel of Connecticut's geologic diversity and also recounts the impact of past climates, earthquakes, and meteorites on the lives of the people who made Connecticut their home.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“…this book is a delight for any Connecticut resident, visitor, or anyone who wants to learn how the geology of a region can influence its development. This book will be required reading for my students from now on.”—Mark Evans, Connecticut History

“This reviewer taught Connecticut geology for 30 years and still found information here that he had never known, presented in a form that captured his interest to the very end. … One does not need a background in geology, or even the sciences, to understand what Zeilinga de Boer presents or to find this work enjoyable reading. Highly recommended (for) undergraduate students, general readers, and professionals, all levels.” —C.W. Dimmick, Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780819568915
  • Publisher: Wesleyan University Press
  • Publication date: 7/21/2009
  • Series: Garnet Books
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 831,979
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

JELLE ZEILINGA de BOER is the Harold T. Stearns professor of Earth Science emeritus at Wesleyan University and author, with D.T. Sanders, of Volcanoes in Human History (2002) and Earthquakes in Human History (2005).
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Table of Contents

In the Beginning: Continental Fusion and Breakup
Weather and Climate: Hurricanes and Ice Ages
Connecticut's Geologic Treasures: Gems and Ores
Sidebar: Gems in Quarry Tailings
Sidebar: Other Historic Quarries and Mines in Connecticut
Settlers and Soils in the Central Valley: The Legacy of Glacial Lake Hitchcock
The Metacomet Ridge: The Scientific, Political, and Cultural Impact of an old Lava Flow
Sidebar: The Curse of the Black Dog
The Moodus Noises: The Science and Lore of Connecticut Earthquakes
Sidebar: Moodus Tremors and Sonic Booms
Visitors from Space: The Weston and Wethersfield Meteorites
Afterword: Our Lithic Inheritance
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