Beyond the Hundredth Meridian

John Wesley Powell and the Second Opening of the West

Stegner, Wallace

Book - 1992
Average Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.
Beyond the Hundredth Meridian
In this book Wallace Stegner recounts the sucesses and frustrations of John Wesley Powell, the distinguished ethnologist and geologist who explored the Colorado River, the Grand Canyon, and the homeland of Indian tribes of the American Southwest. A prophet without honor who had a profound understanding of the American West, Powell warned long ago of the dangers economic exploitation would pose to the West and spent a good deal of his life overcoming Washington politics in getting his message across. Only now, we may recognize just how accurate a prophet he was. "This book goes far beyond biography, into the nature and soul of the American West. It is Stegner at his best, assaying an entire era of our history, packing his pages with insights as shrewd as his prose." -Ivan Doig

Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, 1992, c1954
ISBN: 9780140159943
Branch Call Number: B-P8837s 1992
Characteristics: xxiii, 438 p., [20] p. of plates :,ill., maps ;,20 cm


From Library Staff

Stegner is more well-known for his award-winning fiction and the dizzying list of writers that studied under him. This narrative of John Wesley Powell's adventures in the Southwest and his profound advocacy for it may be Stegner at his best.

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Jul 26, 2011
  • evandertogt rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Excellent book: the first third is an exciting account of Powell's exploration of the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon, the rest a slightly more difficult exposition of his research on Indian peoples, geology and dryland irrigation, and his attempts to make a good topographical map of the US and to regulate new settlings so that they would have access to water in the more arid regions of the West.


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