It Happened at Grand Canyon

It Happened at Grand Canyon

by Todd R. Berger

Paperback(Second Edition)

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The Grand Canyon is an American icon, a scenic wonder like no other. From the several Native American tribes who have called Grand Canyon home to swashbuckling pioneers to an airliner collision over the canyon that led to the formation of the FAA, It Happened at Grand Canyon tells the history of this colossal, magnificent place.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780762771974
Publisher: TwoDot
Publication date: 12/01/2015
Series: It Happened in the West Series
Edition description: Second Edition
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 1,210,849
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Todd R. Berger is the former managing editor of the Grand Canyon Association and a freelance writer, editor, and photographer based at Grand Canyon National Park. He is the coauthor of Insiders' Guide® to Grand Canyon and Northern Arizona, and his work regularly leads him into the canyon for research, photography, and inspiration. He lives in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Read an Excerpt

"The whole gorge for miles lay beneath us and it was by far the most awfully grand and impressive scene I have ever yet seen."
—Thomas Moran, in a letter to his wife, August 13, 1873

By the time landscape artist Thomas Moran first looked out over the Grand Canyon from the North Rim at Toroweap in August 1873, he was already famous for his paintings and drawings of the American West. In 1870 Scribner's Monthly commissioned the 33-year-old Moran to illustrate an article about Yellowstone, and the versatile artist created ink wash illustrations based on crude drawings of the wonders of Yellowstone sketched by two members of an expedition to the future national park in the summer of that year. The illustrations were published in the May and June 1871 issues of the magazine along with the two-part article by Thomas Langford.
Buoyed by the publication of his Yellowstone sketches and armed with a recommendation from Jay Cooke, a Philadelphia banker and agent for the Northern Pacific Railroad, Moran talked his way onto the expedition of Dr. Ferdinand V. Hayden to Yellowstone in the summer of 1871. Relying on photographs taken by William Henry Jackson and his own sketches and watercolors made during the trip, Moran completed a seven-foot by twelve-foot oil painting, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, which the government purchased in 1872 for the then-momentous sum of $10,000 and hung it in the U.S. Capitol. Earlier that year, Congress had created Yellowstone National Park; congressional supporters of the Yellowstone bill had been heavily influenced by Moran's illustrations in Scribner's, as well as the sketches and watercolors he brought back from Wyoming after the Hayden expedition.
But when the famous explorer of the Southwest Major John Wesley Powell requested Moran's services for a trip to the Grand Canyon in 1872, the busy artist turned the major down: he had too many Yellowstone commissions to take time off that summer. A year later, after the artist had completed his work, he finally joined a new Powell expedition into the canyons of southwestern Utah Territory and on to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.
Major Powell's theories on the formation of the Grand Canyon heavily influenced Moran. In 1875 the Government Printing Office published Powell's Exploration of the Colorado River of the West and Its Tributaries, including numerous illustrations by Moran. In that book Powell described the formation of the pinnacles and buttes of the inner canyon: "No human hand has placed a block in all those wonderful structures. The rain drops of unreckoned ages have cut them all from solid rock." Today, the effects of erosion on the formation of the canyon are widely known, but in 1875 many viewed Powell's ideas as radical. Regardless, Powell heavily influenced Moran, and the artist incorporated his idealized version of the role of falling water in the creation of the canyon in his equally large companion painting to the Yellowstone piece, The Chasm of the Colorado, completed in 1874.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments     ix
Map     xii
Introduction     xiii
The Colorado River Is Six Feet Wide-1540     1
Entrada-1776     5
Christmas at the Grand Canyon-1858     10
First through the Grand Canyon?-1867     17
The Dead Explorers-1869     22
The Ferryman-1872     28
The Chasm of the Colorado-1874     33
The Cruel Colorado-1889     38
El Tovar-1905     45
Grand Canyon Mummies-1909     49
Moving Photography-1911-1912     55
Driving to the Colorado River-1914     62
Phantom Ranch-1922     65
Inner Canyon Landing-1922     69
The Kaibab Deer Affair-1924     74
Bypassing Bright Angel-1925     80
The Honeymooners-1928     85
Hazardous Duty-1933-1936     92
Somewhere in the Grand Canyon-1944     97
Grand Canyon Enters the Atomic Age-19 51     102
Dips in the Colorado-1955     107
The Fallen-1956     112
The Battle of El Tovar-1966     118
Lost-1975     125
Airborne Burros-1980     129
The Undermining of Glen Canyon Dam-1983     133
Reaching into the Past-1989     139
Danny Ray Horning-1992     144
Two Bad Days-2000     150
Fledgling Superstar-2003     157
Grand Canyon Facts & Trivia     162
Bibliography     166
Index     188
About the Author     194

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It Happened at Grand Canyon 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
foof2you on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Great book featuring thirty short stories about The Grand Canyon. Starting with the Spanish in the 1500's and moving to present days. These stories are informative and interesting. I would recommend reading this book before going to the Canyon. This book gives one many different aspects of the Canyon and the many colorful characters that have visited and traveled through the Canyon .