A naturalist and avid hiker since his youth, Vince was instrumental in studying, conserving and establishing many of upstate New York's natural preserves and trails, and was the visionary who originally conceived of the Long Path, a hiking trail running from New York City to his beloved Adirondack Mountains. He was the founder of both the Mohawk Valley Hiking Club and the Schenectady Wintersports Club, where he established the nation's first Ski Patrol, and made Gore Mountain into a skiing destination. His natural curiosity as a boy led him into archaeological and historical field research later in life, where he focused on such subjects as the old Erie Canal and the preservation of Dutch Barns across the state.
This autobiography, written in Vincent Schaefer's easy-going, readable style, and filled with personal and historical photos, is complemented by a chapter of stories and memories composed by friends, family and former professional colleagues. His important memoir begins with the words, "I have led an interesting life!" An interesting life indeed!
About the Editor: Don Rittner is an American historian, archeologist, environmental activist, educator, and author living in New York's Capital District. He has published more than 30 books, more than a thousand articles, publisher of three magazines and scientific journals, and a former columnist for the Troy Record newspaper. He currently writes a history blog for the Albany Times Union.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Here is an original. A very curious mind active in the outdoors learned firsthand about Nature, Native American Indians, throughout eastern New York in the Mohawk Valley. His hobbies connected him to farmers and GE's top executives -- people whom he cultivated and later when he needed a boost, they came through with ideas and opportunities. His knack for using his imagination was boundless. Trained as a tool and die maker in the legendary GE machine shops he was given many instrumentation tasks which eventually landed him a position un the GE Research Lab under the mentorship of Nobel Laureate Irving Langmuir. Langmuir shared theoretical ideas and Vince cobbled together models using oil cans, & bees wax. They were a formidable team. This autobiography speaks about his development, breakthrough ideas hard work unfettered by the paradigms that he might have learned in High School and College -- he went to neither. His stories of almost perfecting the solar cell long before it was invented and surprising discoverise (serendipity) for making snow, smoke generators, submarine communication, TV tubes and so forth are a delight to read. His writing is an easy going style with nice breaks to new areas of inquiry. Well worth the read.