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Comment: Hardcover with dust jacket / History Book Club edition; illustrated & fully annotated / pristine condition save for minor shelf wear / secure tracked shipping; expedited shipping available; international orders ship air mail!
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Exploration and Empire: The Explorer and the Scientist in the Winning of the American West (Fred H. and Ella Mae Moore Texas History Reprint Series) Hardcover – September 1, 1993

3.4 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

From early mountain men searching for routes through the Rockies to West Point soldier-engineers conducting topographical expeditions, the exploration of the American West mirrored the development of a fledgling nation. In his Pulitzer Prize-winning Exploration and Empire, William H. Goetzmann analyzes the special role the explorer played in shaping the vast region once called "the Great American Desert". According to Goetzmann, the exploration of the West was not a haphazard series of discoveries, but a planned - even programmed - activity in which explorers, often armed with instructions from the federal government, gathered information that would support national goals for the new lands. As national needs and the frontier's image changed, the West itself was rediscovered by successive generations of explorers, a process that in turn helped shape its culture. Nineteenth-century western exploration, Goetzmann writes, can be divided into three stages. The first, beginning with the Lewis and Clark expedition in 1804, was marked by the need to collect practical information, such as the locations of the best transportation routes through the wilderness. Then came the era of settlement and investment - the drive to fulfill the Manifest Destiny of a nation beginning to realize what immense riches lay beyond the Mississippi. The final stage involved a search for knowledge of a different kind, as botanists and paleontologists, ethnographers and engineers hunted intensively for scientific information in the "frontier laboratory". This last phase also saw a rethinking of the West's place in the national scheme; it was a time of nascent conservation movements and public policy discussions aboutthe region's future. Drawing on a wealth of primary sources, Goetzmann offers a masterful overview of the opening of the West, as well as a fascinating study of the nature of exploration and its consequences for civilization.

About the Author

WILLIAM H. GOETZMANN in the Jack S. Blanton, Sr., Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin and a Fellow of the Texas State Historical Association. He is the author of many books and articles, including Army Exploration in the American West, which is also published by the TSHA.
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Product Details

  • Series: Fred H. and Ella Mae Moore Texas History Reprint Series (Book 12)
  • Hardcover: 702 pages
  • Publisher: Texas State Historical Assn (September 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0876111355
  • ISBN-13: 978-0876111352
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.6 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #591,759 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I consider Dr. Goetzmann one of the best professors on the history of the
American West. His Exploration and Empire is a classic of the exploring of
the west by explorers and scientists. I ordered a hard cover copy and it
arrived on time and in excellent condition. I have added this classic book
to my American History collection. Charles
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Heavy going this book, but packed full of an astonishing collection of historical fact. A revelation as to the reasons for the West's exploration and how it came about.
An impressive picture of the times. A great refernce book and well worth re-reading. The only fault was the reproduction of the all important maps in my paper back version, far too small to interpret. Even a magnifying glass hardly improved legibility. A good atlas and Google Earth were of great asistance however.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read the original edition of this several times--it's a great book.

This edition (purchased for a gift) was very disappointing. The graphics had been copied and many were unreadable. The cover was also disappointed. I recommend anyone interested in this book pass on the second edition and try to get a used copy of the first edition.
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Format: Hardcover
As an historian I have always been admirer of Dr Goetzmann and although the book was a good overview of the topic it had errors, some possibly due to editing and some of fact. I felt his generalizations were a little too positive and based on his own opinion rather than documentation. The maps in this edition were unreadable and is bizarre when one looks at the topic of the book. Maps make up a large part of the story and if we cannot read them then a large part of this story is missing.
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Format: Paperback
I have not read this entire 647 pages of this paperback edition. As disclosure, I am selling a copy of it here on line. My job here is to offer more information for the buyer if that helps in the purchase.

I am a sucker for any historical book that can authoritatively offer new information on a topic of American history. The author received an award for his PhD study and taught history and American Studies at Yale and University of Texas for years before writing this book. It won the Pulitzer Prize in History in 1967 because it offers a compendium of information, easy to access with detailed index, and well sourced with strong footnoting, with more source info discussed at back of book

Yes, some of the many the map illustrations are small therefore hard to read but they could be accessed if magnified. Overall, a wonderful book and I would recommend it to any history buff or scholar, as a text to study and to still use as a source on this topic.

The Antiquarian Resource
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