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This American River: Five Centuries of Writing about the Connecticut
     

This American River: Five Centuries of Writing about the Connecticut

by W. D. Wetherell (Editor)
 
The Connecticut, New England's dominant waterway and, since 1999, an American Heritage River, drains much of Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. For five centuries its natural beauty and rich history have inspired an enormously diverse and impressive array of writers. A major transportation artery and power source, it has been the main avenue for

Overview

The Connecticut, New England's dominant waterway and, since 1999, an American Heritage River, drains much of Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. For five centuries its natural beauty and rich history have inspired an enormously diverse and impressive array of writers. A major transportation artery and power source, it has been the main avenue for colonial settlements, Indian raids and border conflicts, as well as historic floods and hurricanes, epic log drives, farms and industries, sport and quiet reflection. More recently, the river's drama has included disappearance and then reclamation of salmon and shad runs, and increasingly successful fights to restore the purity and health of its water.

In This American River, noted novelist and premier New England nature writer W. D. Wetherell, long enamored of the river and its vast literature, celebrates the Connecticut in this eclectic anthology. Excerpted novels, essays, poems, journals, and histories--by Henry David Thoreau, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Wallace Stevens, Rudyard Kipling, Francis Parkman, and a splendid array of such contemporary writers as Sylvia Plath, Bill McKibben, and Sydney Lea--together portray this magnificent American river in all its glory.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Probably for as long as any human society has lived in any given locale, people have told stories about its rivers. The American tradition of nature writing about rivers, as exemplified by this anthology, began almost as soon as Europeans settled the continent. The Connecticut has been a vital element in the history and ecology of New England, and, in that regard, the editor suggests that it is a uniquely "American" river. The contributions to this volume include guides, reports, travelogs, poetry, natural histories, and other genres. Unlike many anthologies, this one is not arranged chronologically but rather in 12 somewhat loosely defined thematic sections: "Early Travelers," "On the River," "The Classic Guides," and so forth. Some notable contributors include Henry David Thoreau, Charles Dickens, Sylvia Plath, and environmentalist Bill McKibben, although most are historical figures whose names will be unfamiliar to lay readers. For libraries in New England and specialized historic/environmental collections. Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781584651116
Publisher:
University Press of New England
Publication date:
09/01/2002
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

W.D. WETHERELL is the author of fourteen books, including the novels Morning (2001), The Wisest Man in America (UPNE, 1995), and Chekhov's Sister (1990), and also Wherever That Great Heart May Be: Stories (UPNE, 1996) and The River Trilogy (Vermont River, Upland Stream, and One River More, 1985-1988). He is the holder of the Strauss Living Award from the American Academy of Arts and letters; his writing on travel appears fequently in The New York Times. Wetherell lives with his family near the banks of the Connecticut in the riverside town of Lyme, New Hampshire, where he is active in local and regional efforts to protect the river.

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