Qty:1
  • List Price: $21.99
  • Save: $5.56 (25%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
The Adirondacks: A Histor... has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Qualifies for FREE 2-Day Shipping / Item Shipped Directly From Amazon / Sold by a Family Owned Business
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

The Adirondacks: A History of America's First Wilderness Paperback – September 15, 1998


See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$16.43
$6.90 $4.65

Best Books of the Month
See the Best Books of January
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Frequently Bought Together

The Adirondacks: A History of America's First Wilderness + The Adirondack Atlas: A Geographic Portrait of the Adirondack Park + Contested Terrain: A New History of Nature and People in the Adirondacks
Price for all three: $57.77

Buy the selected items together
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Holt Paperbacks; 1st edition (September 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805059903
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805059908
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #505,158 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The vast Adirondack region of upstate New York is very much a wilderness, but one ringed by towns and close enough to major cities that it is heavily traveled. Long viewed as a natural playground, the Adirondacks were a favorite haunt of transcendentalist philosophers Henry Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson, of conservationists such as Franklin Burroughs and Theodore Roosevelt, of bohemians and hippies, and of back-to-the-land types. Still wild enough that wolf reintroduction has been proposed for the Adirondacks, the territory remains a powerfully inspiring place of refuge and recreation. Paul Schneider tells the story of this river-laced, forested land with imagination and a flair for just the right anecdote. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Journalist Schneider has written a poignant, insightful history of New York State's Adirondack region. He relates here the life and lore of these scenic mountains and lakes (Whiteface, Mt. Marcy, Fulton Chain Lakes) from the region's earliest inhabitants (Haudenosaunce/Iroquois) through the advent of Henry Hudson (1609), the Revolutionary War, abolitionists (John Brown), 19th-century homesteaders, Hudson River School artists, tuberculosis patients to Melville Dewey's Lake Placid Club, the Adirondack Mountain Club, and the present environmental conservation efforts. Schneider duly records that this once wild and untamed region has accommodated the likes of Wil Durant, Paul Smith, Robert Louis Stevenson, James Fenimore Cooper, Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung, and Presidents B. Harrison, Coolidge, Hoover, and T. Roosevelt. It is now up to our present legislators, he notes, to preserve what remains.?Ann E. Cohen, Rochester P.L., N.Y.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
5 star
6
4 star
4
3 star
4
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 14 customer reviews
Bought this book as a gift for my husband.
Karri Mc.
So it is a mix of too much detail and not enough.
Alessandra Vasyuta
A must read for anyone who loves the Adirondacks.
richard grosnick

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 3, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Lively and well written, Paul Schneider's The Adirondacks has appeared virtually simultaneously with Philp Terrie's Contested Terrain. Both are regional histories; either book well serves readers as an introduction. Those more familiar with the extensive Adirondack literature will not find the works redundant but rather complementary. Schneider is a journalist, whereas Terrie is an professor who writes more conventional history, largely recalling his own and other historians' previous narratives. Terrie's new survey is moderatley revisionist, however, in concern for the ordinary people of the region. Although Schneider likewise repeats much familiar history, his journalistic slant conveys more immediacy. The strength of his work derives from personal interviews with many Adirondackers, well conveying deeply different values and agendas. Dating from 1991 through 1995, the specific issues may be dated already as news, but as oral history and a record of controversy Scheider's book will became a lasting addition to the Adirondack literature. ISBN 0-8050-3490-0
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 28, 1998
Format: Paperback
Paul Schneider's The Adirondacks: A History of America's First Wilderness is both good history and great story-telling. Taking the region that is now the Adirondack Park from the first arrival of whites through the present, Schneider skillfully weaves together both present and past. For example, his chapter "The Prince of Otter China" tells about fur trapping today, and introduces the reader to several living "characters." Neighboring chapters then recount the history of trapping in the Park. Other groupings of chapters do likewise for lumbering, wilderness guiding, and mining. One "chapter" of the Adirondacks which he unfortunately slights are Dr. Trudeau and the tuberculosis "cure cottages" in and around Saranac Lake. This small quibble aside, I recommend this book to readers -- both New Yorkers /Adirondackers and general readers -- who want to learn more both about a specific, fascinating place and time and the idea of the American "wilderness" in general.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
18 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Hal Lancer on March 9, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The title of this book, more than anything else, misses the mark here. "A History of America's First Wilderness" suggests a comprehensive history of key forces that shaped Adirondack geography and culture, and this book doesn't attempt to be that. Paul Schneider is a journalist, not an historian, and this difference in perspective is reflected in his writing. His book consists of a series of anecdotal essays, snapshots in time, with little thematic development, analysis, or reference across chapters. It's enjoyable reading and will give some insight into historical forces that have formed the ongoing battle in the Adirondacks over development, but better regional histories, such as Diana Muir's "Reflections in Bullough's Pond; Economy and Ecosystem in New England" probe deeper than "The Adirondacks" even tries.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By mringo@umich.edu on October 28, 1997
Format: Hardcover
This book was a lot of fun to read. The author interviewed loggers, trappers, environmental activists, and administrators and interwove their stories with historical accounts. This juxtaposition of modern and historical served to keep the perspective fresh and relevant. However, be advised that this book was probably not intended to be a comprehensive, scholarly history of the Adirondacks. There are gaps in the historical storytelling. The author rarely takes the perspective very far from New York State. However, it does provide a very readable background for the modern debate over the Adirondack Park.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 17, 1997
Format: Hardcover
I've been a fan of the Adirondacks for many years. This book offers a consise and readable history of the region. I learned a great deal about the park. This knowledge will greatly enhance my future visits to the park. The author's interviews with local people and officials greatly added to the enjoyment of the book. If you have any interest in the Adirondacks, I highly recommend this enjoyable book. Happy reading!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Eric C. Sundwall on August 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Aside from a traditional recount of the important white guys who did everything, Mr. Schneider captures the essence of the people throughout the modern eras. His time with modern trappers, loggers and bureaucrats capture the sense of urgency for anybody involved in the Park. Initially sought as a farming area after the strategic significance of the French and Revolutionary Wars, lumber and mining interests drove the Park after the attempt to cultivate a place with only 10 percent of its land arable. Mining was sort of disaster at first with many tragic elements. The descriptions of the old facilities as they sit or stand now was a pretty neat journalistic trick.

The historical portrayal of notables like Sir William Johnson and John Brown were real page turners. I've seen the signs just outside Lake Placid to John Brown's house and always thought it was the John Brown involved in the early 19th Century, not the infamous abolitionist. The tragic story of Mr. Henderson and his death in front of his eleven year old son was a real gut wrencher for any tough guy. It seems like there were at least half a dozen fellows who spawned the model for Fenimore's Natty Bumppo. Roger's Rangers, famous guides, French Aristocracy's designs and numerous other affairs and plans sets up a lot of good story telling.

I would still like know why places like Pottersville are called what they are. Where the summer camps were located and who went there. Famous painters, philosophers and robber barons are all very interesting. Knowing the issues and their implications of the future is very important too. Beating them to death is certainly something another volume must do. Fortunately this effort doesn't digress too much into any of these arenas without qualifications and genuine purpose.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


More About the Author

I grew up in Amherst, Massachusetts, a college town in the western half of the state. Went to public high school then Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island and the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. After stints working with refugees in Thailand, prep-school students in Switzerland, and a brief career as a wire-service stringer in Kenya, I settled into magazine journalism in New York City. On staff at Esquire, and freelancing all over town, (including Vanity Fair where I met my wife) I eventually found myself writing mostly about environmental issues, primarily for the National Aububon Magazine.

That work led to my first book, The Adirondacks, A History of America's First Wilderness, which was a New York Times notable book of 1997. My second book, The Enduring Shore, A History of Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket, was also published by Henry Holt and was well received.

Sometime in between those two books I came across a very brief mention of the Cabeza de Vaca story in an obscure book on the old trails west. I knew immediately that I had to know more about this incredible story of four who survived and crossed America out of 400 who landed in Florida in 1528. That obsession eventually resulted in Brutal Journey, my newest book, which the New York Times called "hard to believe, and impossible to forget." Next was Bonnie and Clyde, which I wrote almost as a non-fiction novel, or oral history. The Oprah magazine called it "a biography so immediate it's almost an act of ventriloquism."

Old Man River: The Mississippi River in North American History, was a labor of love for I grew up goofing around on rivers and have always wanted to write about the great stream in the middle of the country.

What's next? Not sure, but I'm also the editor of Martha's Vineyard Magazine, so I'm keeping busy here in paradise.


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?