1973 Nervous Breakdown: Watergate, Warhol, and the Birth of Post-Sixties America


Andreas Killen - 2006
    A year of shattering political crisis, 1973 was defined by defeat in Vietnam, Roe v. Wade, the oil crisis and the Watergate hearings. It was also a year of remarkable creative ferment. From landmark movies such as The Exorcist, Mean Streets, and American Graffiti to seminal books such as Fear of Flying and Gravity's Rainbow, from the proto-punk band the New York Dolls to the first ever reality TV show, The American Family, the cultural artifacts of the year reveal a nation in the middle of a serious identity crisis. 1973 Nervous Breakdown offers a fever chart of a year of uncertainty and change, a year in which post-war prosperity crumbled and modernism gave way to postmodernism in a lively and revelatory analysis of one of the most important periods in the second half of the 20th century.

Jedediah Smith and the Opening of the West


Dale L. Morgan - 1964
    Before his death on the Santa Fe Trail at the hands of the Comanches, Jed Smith and his partners had drawn the map of the west on a beaver skin.

The Uprooted: The Epic Story of the Great Migrations that Made the American People


Oscar Handlin - 1951
    It elucidates the hopes and the yearnings of the immigrants that propelled them out of their native environments to chance the hazards of the New World. It traces the profound imprint they made upon this world and how they, in turn, were changed by it.When first published, The Uprooted won the Pulitzer Prize for history. This second edition is enlarged by a supplemental chapter, in which the author examines the meaning of the immigrant experience in light of more recent decades, and by a brilliant bibliographic essay.

Montana Women Homesteaders: A Field of One's Own


Sarah Carter - 2009
    By shedding light on these determined nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century pioneers, Carter reveals inspiringh stories filled with joy, tragedy, and redemption.

The American West: A New Interpretive History


Robert V. Hine - 1984
    Hine and John Mack Faragher, present the American West as both frontier and region, real and imagined, old and new, and they show how men and women of all ethnic groups were affected when different cultures met and clashed. Their concise and engaging survey of frontier history traces the story from the first Columbian contacts between Indians and Europeans to the multicultural encounters of the modern Southwest.The book attunes us to the voices of the frontier’s many diverse peoples: Indians, struggling to defend their homelands and searching for a way to live with colonialism; the men and women who became immigrants and colonists from all over the world; African Americans, both slave and free; and borderland migrants from Mexico, Canada, and Asian lands. Profusely illustrated with contemporary drawings, posters, and photographs and written in lively and accessible prose, the book not only presents a panoramic view of historical events and characters but also provides fascinating details about such topics as western landscapes, environmental movements, literature, visual arts, and film.Following in the tradition of Hine’s earlier acclaimed work, The American West: An Interpretive History, this volume will be an essential resource for scholars, students, and general readers.

Journal Of A Trapper: Nine Years in the Rocky Mountains, 1834-1843


Osborne Russell - 1964
    Haines In 1834, Osborne Russell joined an expedition from Boston, under the direction of Nathaniel J. Wyeth, which proceeded to the Rocky Mountains to capitalise on the salmon and fur trade. He would remain there, hunting, trapping, and living off the land, for the next nine years. Journal of a Trapper is his remarkable account of that time as he developed into a seasoned veteran of the mountains and experienced trapper. In Russell’s own words he explains to the reader “if you are in search of the travels of a classical and scientific tourist, please lay this volume down, and pass on, for this simply informs you what a trapper has seen and experienced. But if you wish to peruse a hunter’s rambles among the wild regions of the Rocky Mountains, please read this”. Russell encounters grizzly bears, hunts buffalos, trades with Native Americans and suffers from the extreme conditions of his mountainous environment. His account is written in vivid prose that transports the reader to nineteenth century Northwest America. Of particular note are his descriptions of the landscapes in which he lived. Although it had not been designated a national park during Russell’s time, his portrayal of Yellowstone is truly breath-taking. This is the perfect book for anyone wishing to find out more about the lives of the mountain men, what they ate, how they hunted, what shelters they used and how they survived in some of the most inhospitable conditions. After this book was written Osborne Russell became a politician who helped form the government of the state of Oregon. He was born in 1814 in Maine. He ran away from home as a young man for a life at sea, but eventually found employment as a trapper. In 1844, he was elected to the second Executive Committee of the Provisional Government of Oregon, but after he was not re-elected he eventually went and lived in California. He died in 1892. This edition was published in 1921.

Rebels in Paradise: The Los Angeles Art Scene and the 1960s


Hunter Drohojowska-Philp - 2011
    Freedom from an established way of seeing, making, and marketing art fueled their creativity, which in turn inspired the city. Today Los Angeles has four museums dedicated to contemporary art, around one hundred galleries, and thousands of artists. Here, at last, is the book that tells the saga of how the scene came into being, why a prevailing Los Angeles permissiveness, 1960s-style, spawned countless innovations, including Andy Warhol's first exhibition, Marcel Duchamp's first retrospective, Frank Gehry's mind-bending architecture, Rudi Gernreich's topless bathing suit, Dennis Hopper's Easy Rider, even the Beach Boys, the Byrds, the Doors, and other purveyors of a California style. In the 1960s, Los Angeles was the epicenter of cool.

Lone Star: A History Of Texas And The Texans


T.R. Fehrenbach - 1968
    Never before has the story been told with more vitality and immediacy. Fehrenbach re-creates the Texas saga from prehistory to the Spanish and French invasions to the heyday of the cotton and cattle empires. He dramatically describes the emergence of Texas as a republic, the vote for secession before the Civil War, and the state's readmission to the Union after the War. In the twentieth century oil would emerge as an important economic resource and social change would come. But Texas would remain unmistakably Texas, because Texans "have been made different by the crucible of history; they think and act in different ways, according to the history that shaped their hearts and minds."

A Revolutionary People at War: The Continental Army and American Character, 1775-1783


Charles Royster - 1980
    He ranges imaginatively outside the traditional techniques of analytical historical exposition to build his portrait of how individuals and a populace at large faced the Revolution and its implications. The book was originally published by UNC Press in 1980.

When Chicago Ruled Baseball: The Cubs-White Sox World Series of 1906


Bernard A. Weisberger - 2006
    Two teams from the same city squared off against each other in an intracity World Series, pitting the heavily favored Cubs of the National League against the hardscrabble American League champion White Sox. Now, for its centennial anniversary, noted historian Bernard A. Weisberger tells the tale of a unique time in baseball, a unique time in America, and a time when Chicago was at the center of it all.At the turn of the century, American baseball and America itself were, to a modern observer, both completely alien and yet timelessly similar to what we know today. In 1906 the sport of baseball was still mired in the "dead ball" era, when defense won championships, and players didn't need bodybuilder physiques in order to be competitive. The league was racially segregated. A six-day workweek was threatened by early game times, as the first night game wouldn't be played for another three decades. There was no radio to broadcast the contest. Only one ball was used throughout the game. And yet it was still ninety feet between bases. The home team still batted in the bottom of the ninth inning. And the final score could still capture the attention of a nation.It was a time when the accomplishments on the field mirrored those beyond the diamond. America was the land of the self-made man, the land where hard work and determination could make a person's fortune. A. G. Spalding proved instrumental in making baseball what it is today -- a thriving business and a national pastime. Charles Comiskey worked his way from scoring runs as a player to becoming one of the most influential owners in baseball history. Mordecai "Three-Finger" Brown overcame a horribly disfiguring injury to become a Hall of Fame pitcher for the Cubs. And Tinkers-to-Evers-to-Chance proved that you could use teamwork to stand out as stars.A city that had rebuilt itself from the ashes of the Great Fire thirty-five years earlier was now the focal point of an entire baseball-loving country. The contest that could be called the Great Streetcar Series would electrify the city of Chicago, and prove to be one of the most unique and exciting World Series ever to be played.

River of Lost Souls: The Science, Politics, and Greed Behind the Gold King Mine Disaster


Jonathan P. Thompson - 2018
    Thompson digs into the science, politics, and greed behind the 2015 Gold King Mine disaster, and unearths a litany of impacts wrought by a century and a half of mining, energy development, and fracking in southwestern Colorado. Amid these harsh realities, Thompson explores how a new generation is setting out to make amends.As shocking and heartbreaking as the Gold King spill and its aftermath may be, it's merely the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The disaster itself was the climax of the long and troubled story of the Gold King mine, staked by a Swedish immigrant back in 1887. And it was only the most visible manifestation of a slow-moving, multi-faceted environmental catastrophe that had been unfolding here long before the events of August 5, 2015.Jonathan Thompson is a native Westerner with deep roots in southwestern Colorado. He has been an environmental journalist focusing on the American West since he signed on as reporter and photographer at the Silverton Standard & the Miner newspaper in 1996. He has worked and written for High Country News for over a decade, serving as editor-in-chief from 2007 to 2010. He was a Ted Scripps fellow in environmental journalism at the University of Colorado in Boulder, and in 2016 he was awarded the Society of Environmental Journalists' Outstanding Beat Reporting, Small Market. He currently lives in Bulgaria with his wife Wendy and daughters Lydia and Elena.

America, Empire of Liberty: A New History


David Reynolds - 2009
    These first thirty episodes start with the Native Americans, who arrived from Asia around 15,000 years ago. In a fascinating journey that takes in the impact of Columbus, the founding of Puritan New England, the Declaration of Independence, the slave trade, and the forced relocation of the Indians, Reynolds shows how the United States expanded to cover a whole continent, laying the foundations of a superpower if the country could stay united. And that seemd to be a big if in 1861 as the conflicts over liberty and slavery brought America to the brink of Civil War.Volume 2: Power and Progress. In this second series of thirty episodes, Reynolds depicts the tragedy and heroism of the Civil War, which finally ended slavery, though not racial discrimination, but spurred the dynamism of the reunited nation as it grew into an industrial giant. World War I made America a force on the world stage, but then the country lost its way, and its nerve, in the Depression, only for another world war to turn it into a nuclear superpower by 1945. This is also the story of how ordinary Americans lived, worked, and had fun, with fascinating notes about H. J. Heinz, Buffalo Bill, skyscrapers, baseball, the flappers, and "Gone with the Wind."Volume 3: Empire and Evil. The final series of thirty episodes chronicles America s long struggle with the Soviet Union through the Cuban missile crisis to the collapse of what Ronald Reagan dubbed the evil empire and examines the corrosive effect of that confrontation on American values, particularly in Vietnam and Watergate. The country also struggled to overcome the evils of its own racist past, from the Civil Rights Movement to the election of its first black president. Woven into this tapestry are vivid threads from ordinary life, such as the impact of Elvis on popular music, the battle over abortion rights, and the story of the personal computer and the information revolution.Written and presented by acclaimed historian David Reynolds, this saga won the Voice of the Listener & Viewer Award for the Best New Radio Program and was nominated for a SONY Radio Academy Award."

City on Fire: The Forgotten Disaster That Devastated a Town and Ignited a Landmark Legal Battle


Bill Minutaglio - 2003
    And, in time, the survivors of that all-American city found themselves wondering if their own government had delivered them into this hell on earth. In 1947, Texas City was experiencing boom times, bristling with chemical and oil plants, built to fuel Europe's seemingly endless appetite for the raw materials needed to rebuild its ruined cities. When an explosion ripped through its docks, the effect was cataclysmic. Thousands of people were wounded or killed, the fire department was decimated, planes were shot out of the sky, and massive ocean-bound freighters disintegrated. The blast knocked people to their knees in Galveston, ten miles away; broke windows in Houston, forty miles away; and rattled a seismograph in Denver, Colorado. Chaos reigned, the military was scrambled, the FBI launched investigations -- and ordinary citizens turned into heroes.For months on end, the brave residents of what had once been an average American town struggled to restore their families, their homes, their lives. And they also struggled to confront another welling nightmare-the possibility that the tragedy that almost erased their city from existence might have been caused by the very government they thought would protect them.City on Fire is a painstakingly researched saga of one of the most profound but forgotten disasters in American history. The Texas City Disaster was a searing, apocalyptic event that had an enormous ripple effect for millions of people around theworld.It changed the way Americans respond to disasters and the way people viewed the American government -- the Texas City Disaster opened the door for average Americans to confront their government and its leaders in the nation's courts of law. It was the first time that the United States of America was named as a defendant in a case that, after a series of dizzying twists and turns, would end up in the nation's highest court.Ultimately, the story of Texas City is a story of courage, humanity, bravery, and a painful quest for justice. It is the story of ordinary Americans behaving in extraordinary ways -- and serving as role models for dignity and grace.

Give Your Heart to the Hawks: A Tribute to the Mountain Men


Win Blevins - 1973
    As trappers in a hostile, trackless land, their exploits opened the gates of the mountains for the wagon trains of pioneers who followed them. Here, among many, are the enthralling stories of:* John Colter, who, in 1808, naked and without weapons or food, escaped captivity by the Blackfeet and ran and walked 250 miles to Fort Lisa at the mouth of the Yellowstone River; * Kit Carson, who ran away from home at age 17, became a legendary mountain man in his 20s and served as scout and guide for John C. Fremont's westward explorations of the 1840s; * Jedediah Smith, a tall, gaunt, Bible-reading New Yorker whose trapping expeditions ranged from the Rockies to California and who was killed by Comanches on the Cimarron in 1831.

The Big Change: America Transforms Itself, 1900-50


Frederick Lewis Allen - 1952
    Best known as the author of Only Yesterday, Allen originated a model of what is sometimes called instant history, the reconstruction of past eras through vivid commentary on the news, fashions, customs, and artifacts that altered the pace and forms of American life. The Big Change was Allen's last and most ambitious book. In it he attempted to chart and explain the progressive evolution of American life over half a century. Written at a time of unprecedented optimism and prosperity, The Big Change defines a transformative moment in American history and provides an implicit and illuminating perspective on what has taken place in the second half of the twentieth century.Allen's theme is the realization, in large measure, of the promise of democracy. As against the strain of social criticism that saw America as enfeebled by affluence and conformity, Allen wrote in praise of an economic system that had ushered in a new age of well being for the American people. He divides his inquiry into three major sections. The first, 'The Old Order, ' portrays the turn-of-the-century plutocracy in which the federal government was largely subservient to business interests and the gap between rich and poor portended a real possibility of bloody rebellion. 'The Momentum of Change' graphically describes the various forces that gradually transformed the country in the new century: mass production, the automobile, the Great Depression and the coming of big government, World War II and America's emergence as a world power. Against this background, Allen shows how the economic system was reformed without being ruined, and how social gaps began to steadily close.The concluding section, 'The New America, ' is a hopeful assessment of postwar American culture. Allen's analysis takes critical issue with many common perceptions, both foreign and domestic, of American life and places remaining social problems in careful perspective. As William O'Neill remarks in his introduction to this new edition, The Big Change is both a deep and wonderfully readable work of social commentary, a book that gains rather than loses with the year