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A Brief History of the Ohio & Erie Canal
A one-volume history of the Ohio & Erie Canal
“There have been a number of books written about Ohio’s nineteenth-century canal system, especially about the Ohio & Erie Canal, but Ohio’s Grand Canal is by far the most meticulously researched account I have ever read.”—Jack Gieck, author of A Photo Album of Ohio’s Canal Era, 1825–1913
By linking Ohio’s two major bodies of water—the Ohio River and Lake Erie—Ohio’s canals, built in the early nineteenth century, caused unprecedented growth and wealth for the fledgling state. The canals opened up Ohio to new markets, new settlers, agriculture, and industry, depositing large sums of money into the region and giving Ohioans a surge of confidence and optimism.
Despite these impressive results, the canals struggled when other modes of transportation, such as the National Road and river steamboats, became serious competitors. The rise in popularity of railroads in the 1850s sparked the beginning of the end for the canals. Over the next decades, the canals declined steadily due to neglect, culminating with a statewide flood in 1913, which effectively rendered most of the Ohio & Erie useless.
Ohio’s Grand Canal concisely details the entire history of the canal system. Author Terry K. Woods chronicles the events leading up to construction, as well as public opinion of the canal system, the modifications made to traditional boat designs, the leasing of the waterways to private companies, and the canals’ legal abandonment in 1929. He also includes a personal look at the 1913 flood through the eyes of a thirteen-year-old boatman who experienced it firsthand.
Well written and thoroughly researched, this single-volume history of the Ohio & Erie Canal will be important to educators and to a general audience interested in Ohio history and canals.
Civil War General and Great Lakes Engineer
Recipient of the Library of Michigan's 2010 Notable Books award
The first biography of Sherman’s chief engineer and the man whose post–Civil War engineering work changed Great Lakes navigation forever
Orlando M. Poe chronicles the life of one of the most influential yet underrated and overlooked soldiers during the Civil War. After joining the Union Army in 1861, Poe commanded the 2nd Michigan Infantry in the Peninsula Campaign and led brigades at Second Bull Run and Fredericksburg. He was then sent west and became one of the Union heroes in the defense of Knoxville. Poe served under several of the war’s greatest generals, including George McClellan and William T. Sherman, who appointed him chief engineer to oversee the burning of Atlanta and Sherman’s March to the Sea. Though technically only a captain in the regular army at the war’s end, Poe was one of Sherman’s most valued subordinates, and he was ultimately appointed brevet brigadier general for his bravery and service.
After the war, Poe supervised the design and construction of numerous Great Lakes lighthouses, all of which are still in service. He rejoined Sherman’s staff in 1873 as engineer aide-de-camp and continued his role as trusted advisor until the general’s retirement in 1884. Poe then returned to his adopted home in Detroit where he began planning his ultimate post–Civil War engineering achievement: the design and construction of what would become the largest shipping lock in the world at Sault St. Marie, Michigan.
Mining an extensive collection of Poe’s unpublished personal papers that span his entire civil and military career, and illustrating the narrative with many previously unpublished photographs, Paul Taylor brings to life for the first time the story of one of the nineteenth century’s most overlooked war heroes.
Memoirs of a Marine Artillery Officer, 1943–1945
The gritty combat memoir of a Marine Corps artilleryman and forward observer
As a married man and Stanford graduate student nearing thirty, Christopher Donner would likely have qualified for an exemption from the draft. Like most of his generation, however, he responded promptly to the call to arms after Pearl Harbor. His wartime experiences in the Pacific Theater were seared into his consciousness, and in early 1946 he set out to preserve those memories while they were still fresh. Sixty-five years later, Donner’s memoir is now available to the public.
John F. Seiberling and the Environmental Movement
The first and only biography of one of America’s greatest conservationists
Akron native and former U.S. Representative John F. Seiberling (1918–2008) grew up on his family’s estate overlooking Ohio’s Cuyahoga River Valley. Within his lifetime, Seiberling would become a leading player in the movement to protect the natural environment and help transform his childhood playground into the federally protected Cuyahoga Valley National Park.
A Passion for the Land begins with a fast-moving narrative of Seiberling’s early life and a vivid description of the physical environment that stimulated his lifelong interests in nature and wilderness. Author Daniel Nelson provides a detailed examination of the congressman’s role as a dedicated environmentalist, covering Seiberling’s efforts to pass path-breaking legislation during the 1970s and the equally important period of defensive activity during the 1980s.
Seiberling’s successful bipartisan campaign to protect the Cuyahoga Valley became a stepping-stone to other important conservation efforts. Working with like-minded legislators and activists in the expanding environmental movement, he used his increasingly influential position in Congress as chair of the House Subcommittee on Public Lands to foster urban parks, transform Alaska, and make wilderness protection a hallmark of the new approach to public lands management. The result was the creation of 100 million acres of parks and refuges in Alaska and millions of acres of protected wilderness in national forests.
Based largely on unpublished correspondence and other previously unused materials, A Passion for the Land concludes with a review of Seiberling’s ongoing involvement in environmental affairs following his decision to retire from Congress in 1987.
Ocean Travel in Anutan Culture and Society
After fourteen months of field research in 1972-73 and an additional four months of field work with the Anutans in the Solomon Islands capital of Honiara in 1983, Richard Feinberg here provides a thorough study of Anutan seafaring and navigation. In doing so he gives rare insights into the larger picture of how Polynesians have adapted to the sea.
This richly illustrated book explores the theory and technique used by Anutans in construction, use, and handling of their craft; the navigational skills still employed in interisland voyaging; and their culturally patterned attitudes toward the ocean and travel on the high seas. Further, the discussion is set within the context of social relations, values, and the Anutan’s own symbolic definitions of the world in which they live.
Spanning oceans and continents, language and the imagination, the unfathomable distances between people and their desires, Allison Davis’s Poppy Seeds creates an “immaculate atlas.” Here language is “broken/ . . . against the margin of the sea,” and a word is a thing that can be “wash[ed] away.” Here the body is both a lesson and a place with an edge you can drive to. The book “longs[s] for as long as/Ohio rivers.” Tangled between worlds and languages both old and new, our deepest emotions search for their roots, hoping to find a place to call home.
Family Letters of Salmon, Kate, and Nettie Chase, 1844-1873
A volume of correspondence between a prominent father and his accomplished daughters
Married three times, Salmon P. Chase lost four children in infancy. Two daughters survived to adulthood and were their father’s companions during his service as a U.S. senator from Ohio, governor of Ohio, Abraham Lincoln’s secretary of the Treasury, and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Kate, his older daughter, acted as an unofficial political advisor to her father and was a prominent Washington, D.C., hostess, while Nettie eschewed a life in the public eye, becoming a wife, mother, and creator of children’s books.
Often separated from his family due to the demands of his career as a lawyer and antislavery politician, Chase maintained his relationship with his daughters by the frequent exchange of letters. Chase’s letters show an ambitious father trying to school his daughters from afar, admonishing them to study and encouraging them to develop self-discipline and personal responsibility. The letters in this volume—from Chase to his daughters, from his daughters to him and to each other—span from when Kate was a young child and Nettie not yet born to their father’s death in 1873.
This collection of correspondence, many letters previously unpublished, stresses familial relationships, the daughters’ education, and the role of women in nineteenth-century America. “Spur Up Your Pegasus” provides important insights into the personal lives and private thoughts of a prominent political family.
The return of popular nineteenth-century short stories of the early American frontier
“James Hall was part of a literary scene in Cincinnati and in Illinois at the same time as Hawthorne and Irving were publishing short stories in New York and Boston. Middle Westerners should be delighted to rediscover one of their earliest masters of short fiction. Hall’s style has all the charm of his most talented peers and deftly employs the techniques of sentimentality, irony, and physiognomy that were so popular at the time.”<br /> —Gordon Sayre, University of Oregon
“The Indian Hater” and Other Stories, by James Hall returns to print an important and popular writer from an often-overlooked moment in American literary history. In the decades before the Civil War, when readers and writers in both the United States and England thought about writing from the American West they thought about James Hall (1793–1867) and his stories “The Indian Hater” and “Pete Featherton.” Between 1828 and 1836, Hall wrote dozens of short stories in a wide variety of genres while working as an editor, politician, and businessman, first in frontier Illinois and after 1833 in Cincinnati. Many of his stories were immediately reprinted on both sides of the Atlantic and achieved success with both the popular audience and the critics, despite their unorthodox treatment of the frontier.
Born a younger son to a prominent Philadelphia literary family, Hall first heard many of the stories that inspired his later fiction as a lawyer and judge riding the circuit in 1820s Illinois. Describing more common subjects than the sweeping narratives of James Fenimore Cooper or Francis Parkman, Hall’s stories depict complex cultural collisions and exchanges: French settlers still populate his southern Illinois, and their more humane treatment of their Indian neighbors is contrasted with that of the Anglo-Americans Hall saw flooding the region; his white men are complicated and often corrupted, hardly confirmations of the myths of Daniel Boone or Cooper’s Leatherstocking; his Indian characters are complex and humanized, unusual depictions in a moment of race-based Manifest Destiny; and Hall’s West is simultaneously tragic, violent, comedic, and deeply conflicted. James Hall was popular and important in his moment, and his stories embody very progressive sentiments. His most famous story, “The Indian Hater,” is Hall’s fictionalization of a real-life settler who, to avenge earlier attacks on his family, periodically hunted and murdered Indians at random. He wrote two versions of this tale, both included in the current volume, the second of which ends with a successful interracial marriage, a very controversial theme at the time.
To read these stories is to rediscover an American frontier too often left out of the history books, one rendered by the hands of a master prose stylist. The lack of quality of nineteenth-century texts coupled with the growing interest in early American writers make “The Indian Hater” and Other Stories, by James Hall an important addition to both U.S. history and literature.
Civil War History Readers, Volume 2
The second volume of the best from Civil War History
For more than fifty years the journal Civil War History has presented the best original scholarship in the study of America’s greatest struggle. The Kent State University Press is pleased to present this second volume in its multivolume series reintroducing the most influential of the more than 500 articles published in the journal. From military command, strategy, and tactics, to political leadership, race, abolitionism, the draft, and women’s issues, from the war’s causes to its aftermath and Reconstruction, Civil War History has published pioneering and provocative analyses of the determining aspects of the Middle Period.
In this second volume of the series, John David Smith has selected groundbreaking essays by David Blight, Eugene Genovese, Mark Neely Jr., Brooks Simpson, and other scholars that examine slavery, abolitionism, emancipation, Lincoln and race, and African Americans as soldiers and veterans. His introduction assesses the contribution of each article to our understanding of the Civil War era.
Those with an interest in the issues, struggles, and controversies that divided a nation will welcome this essential collection.
Glossary and Commentary
A close reading of one of Hemingway’s short story collections
“The aim of this book is not to have the final word on the meaning of the stories that compose Men Without Women. Rather, the study attempts to probe the events of each story as we encounter them. It seeks to explain historical references, to identify allusions, to see how form suggests meaning.”<br /> —From the Preface
Because of the fame The Sun Also Rises brought Ernest Hemingway, when Men Without Women was published just one year later, in 1927, it commanded popular and critical attention. Even reviewers who objected to a masculine emphasis and a sometimes harsh realism identified stories in the collection that could not be ignored. Close commentary, with special attention to allusions, demonstrates that Men Without Women merits a place among the best story collections in American literature.
Reading Hemingway’s Men Without Women guides readers toward understanding how Hemingway tested old ideas of family, gender, race, ethnicity, and manhood. This close study invites scholars, teachers, students, and general readers to take a careful look into Hemingway’s prose.