Walking Home Ground: In the Footsteps of Muir, Leopold, and Derleth

Walking Home Ground: In the Footsteps of Muir, Leopold, and Derleth

by Robert Root


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Walking Home Ground: In the Footsteps of Muir, Leopold, and Derleth by Robert Root

When longtime author Robert Root moves to a small town in southeast Wisconsin, he gets to know his new home by walking the same terrain traveled by three Wisconsin luminaries who were deeply rooted in place—John Muir, Aldo Leopold, and August Derleth. Root walks with Muir at John Muir State Natural Area, with Leopold at the Shack, and with Derleth in Sac Prairie; closer to home, he traverses the Ice Age Trail, often guided by such figures as pioneering scientist Increase Lapham. Along the way, Root investigates the changes to the natural landscape over nearly two centuries, and he chronicles his own transition from someone on unfamiliar terrain to someone secure on his home ground.In prose that is at turns introspective and haunting, Walking Home Ground inspires us to see history’s echo all around us: the parking lot that once was forest; the city that once was glacier. "Perhaps this book is an invitation to walk home ground," Root tells us. "Perhaps, too, it’s a time capsule, a message in a bottle from someone given to looking over his shoulder even as he tries to examine the ground beneath his feet."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780870207860
Publisher: Wisconsin Historical Society
Publication date: 10/24/2017
Edition description: 1
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 347,976
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Robert Root has long been immersed in the nonfiction of place. He is the editor of Landscapes with Figures: The Nonfiction of Place and the author of twenty books including Recovering Ruth: A Biographer’s Tale, named a Michigan Notable Book in 2004, the memoir Happenstance, and the craft studies E. B. White: The Emergence of an Essayist and The Nonfictionist’s Guide: On Reading and Writing Creative Nonfiction. Root teaches nonfiction in Ashland University’s MFA Program in Creative Writing and for the Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis. He and his wife live in Waukesha, Wisconsin.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Prologue xi

Part 1 Interlude 3

Nature Streaming into Us: Walking with John Muir 6

Interlude 42

The Taste for Country: Walking with Aldo Leopold 45

Interlude 79

The Pattern of the Seasons: Walking with August Derleth 82

Part 2 Interlude 133

The White Ghost of a Glacier: Walking the Ice Age Trail 136

Interlude 183

The Land Itself: Walking Home Ground 186

Epilogue 229

Sources and Captions 235

Index 241

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