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The Control of Water in the Atchafalaya Basin, 1800-1995
Louisiana’s Atchafalaya River Basin is one of the most dynamic and critical environments in the country. It sustains the nation’s last cypress-tupelo wetland and provides a habitat for many species of animals. Endowed with natural gas and oil fields, the basin also supports a large commercial fisheries industry. Perhaps most crucial, it remains a primary component of the plan to control the Mississippi River and relieve flooding in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, and other communities in the lower river valley. The continuing health of the basin is a reflection not of nature, but of the work of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. With levee building and clearing in the nineteenth century and damming, dredging, and floodway construction in the twentieth, the basin was converted from a vast forested swamp into a designer wetland, where human aspirations and nature maintained a precarious equilibrium. Originally published by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers primarily for internal distribution, this environmental and political history of the Atchafalaya Basin is an unflinching account of the transformation of an area that has endured perhaps more human manipulation than any other natural environment in the nation. Martin Reuss provides a new preface to bring us up-to-date on the state of the basin, which remains both an engineering contrivance and natural wonder.
In this definitive study, J. D. Hunley traces the program’s development from Goddard’s early rockets (and the German V-2 missile) through the Titan IVA and the Space Shuttle, with a focus on space-launch vehicles. Since these rockets often evolved from early missiles, he pays considerable attention to missile technology, not as an end in itself, but as a contributor to launch-vehicle technology. Focusing especially on the engineering culture of the program, Hunley communicates this very human side of technological development by means of anecdotes, character sketches, and case studies of problems faced by rocket engineers. He shows how such a highly adaptive approach enabled the evolution of a hugely complicated technology that was impressive—but decidedly not rocket science. Unique in its single-volume coverage of the evolution of launch-vehicle technology from 1926 to 1991, this meticulously researched work will inform scholars and engineers interested in the history of technology and innovation, as well as those specializing in the history of space flight.
The Genesis of a Cool Sound
Chronicling a literary life that ended not so long ago, Donald Barthelme: The Genesis of a Cool Sound gives the reader a glimpse at the years when Barthelme began to find his literary voice. A revealing look at Donald Barthelme's influences and development, this account begins with a detailed biographical sketch of his life and spans his growth into a true avant-garde literary figure. Donald Barthleme was born in Philadelphia but raised in Houston, the son of a forward-thinking architect father and a literary mother. Educated at the University of Houston, he became a fine arts critic for the Houston Post; then, following duty in the Korean conflict, he returned to the Post for a short time before becoming editor for Forum literary magazine. After that, he was also director of the Contemporary Arts Museum while writing and publishing his first stories. In the 1960s he moved to New York, where he became editor of Location and was able to practice the art of short fiction in such vehicles as the New Yorker and Harper's Bazaar. In a witty, playful, ironic, and bizarrely imaginative style, he wrote more than one hundred short stories and several novels over the years. In this literary memoir, Donald Barthelme's former wife, Helen Moore Barthelme, offers insights into his career as well as his private life, focusing especially on the decade they were married, from the mid-fifties to the mid-sixties, a period when he was developing the forms and genres that made him famous. During that time Barthelme was finding his voice as a writer and his short stories were beginning to receive notice. In her memoir, Helen Moore Barthelme writes about Donald's early years and her life with him in Houston and New York. In open, straightforward language she tells about their love for each other and about the events that finally divided them. She also describes, from the point of view of the person closest to Donald during that time, the making of one of the most original and imaginative American writers of the twentieth century. Scholars of avant-garde American literature will gain insider perspective to one man's life and the years which, for all their myriad joys and downturns, produced some of the best-remembered works in the literary canon.
General Aviation in the United States
General aviation encompasses all the ways aircraft are used beyond commercial and military flying: private flights, barnstormers, cropdusters, and so on. Authors Janet and Michael Bednarek have taken on the formidable task of discussing the hundred-year history of this broad and diverse field by focusing on the most important figures and organizations in general aviation and the major producers of general aviation aircraft and engines. This history examines the many airplanes used in general aviation, from early Wright and Curtiss aircraft to the Piper Cub and the Lear Jet. The authors trace the careers of birdmen, birdwomen, barnstormers, and others who shaped general aviation—from Clyde Cessna and the Stinson family of San Antonio to Olive Ann Beech and Paul Poberezny of Milwaukee. They explain how the development of engines influenced the development of aircraft, from the E-107 that powered the 1929 Aeronca C-2, the first affordable personal aircraft, to the Continental A-40 that powered the Piper Cub, and the Pratt and Whitney PT-6 turboprop used on many aircraft after World War II. In addition, the authors chart the boom and bust cycle of general aviation manufacturers, the rising costs and increased regulations that have accompanied a decline in pilots, the creation of an influential general aviation lobby in Washington, and the growing popularity of “type” clubs, created to maintain aircraft whose average age is twenty-eight years. This book provides readers with a sense of the scope and richness of the history of general aviation in the United States. An epilogue examining the consequences of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, provides a cautionary note.
Conversations with Apache Elders, Warriors, and Horseholders
Wisdom from the past . . . hope for the future . . . In 1945 the hot wind from a nuclear explosion at Trinity Site on a nearby missile range raged across the Mescalero Apache Reservation in south-central New Mexico, killing hundreds of head of livestock and causing sickness among the descendants of some of the most famous Apache heroes in American history. In many ways, this disaster typified what these Apaches had come to expect from the federal government: attention was often accompanied by undesired results. Four thousand Apaches of the Mescalero, Chiricahua, and Lipan bands now live on this reservation. In twelve remarkable oral history interviews, three generations of Mescalero, Chiricahua, and Lipan Apaches reflect on the trials of the past, the challenges of the present, and hope for the future. A common thread among all of the interviewees is a collective memory of their people as formidable enemies of the U.S. government in the not-too-distant past. Author and ethnographer H. Henrietta Stockel has structured these interviews to encompass three groups of Mescalero Apache society: the elders, the “warriors” (middle-aged), and the “horseholders,” or young apprentices.
For more than a century, scientists have returned time and again to the issue of modern human emergence-the when and where of the evolutionary process and the human behavioral and biological dynamics involved. The 2003 discovery of a human partial skeleton at Tianyuandong (Tianyuan Cave) excited worldwide interest. The first human skeleton from the region to be directly radiocarbon-dated (to 40,000 years before present), its geological age places it close to the time period during which modern humans became permanently established across the Old World (between 50,000 and 35,000 years ago). Through detailed description and interpretation of the most complete early modern human skeleton from eastern Asia, The Early Modern Human from Tianyan Cave, China, addresses long-term questions about the ancestry of modern humans in eastern Asia and the nature of the changes in human behavior with the emergence of modern human biology. This book is a detailed, paleontological and paleobiological presentation of this skeleton, its context, and its implications. By providing basic information for this important human fossil, offering inferences concerning the population processes involved in modern human emergence in eastern Eurasia, and by raising questions concerning the adaptations of these early modern human hunter-gatherers, The Early Modern Human from Tianyuan Cave, China will take its place as a core contribution to the study of modern human emergence.
Originally published in English as White-Tailed Deer Habitat: Ecology and Management on Rangelands (Texas A&M University Press, 2005), this Spanish-language edition brings a valuable management tool to a new reading audience. Unlike other books on white-tailed deer in places where rainfall is relatively high and the environment stable, this book takes an ecological approach to deer management in the semiarid lands of Oklahoma, Texas, and northern Mexico. These are the least productive of white-tail habitats, where periodic drought punctuates long-term weather patterns. The book’s focus on this landscape across political borders is one of its original and lasting contributions and makes this Spanish language edition particularly appropriate.
General Electric in Schenectady
For seven decades the General Electric Company maintained its manufacturing and administrative headquarters in Schenectady, New York.
Electric City: General Electric in Schenectady explores the history of General Electric in Schenectady from the company’s creation in 1892 to the present. As one of America’s largest and most successful corporations, GE built a culture centered around the social good of technology and the virtues of the people who produced it.
At its core, GE culture posited that engineers, scientists, and craftsmen engaged in a team effort to produce technologically advanced material goods that served society and led to corporate profits. Scientists were discoverers, engineers were designers and problem solvers, and craftsmen were artists.
Historian Julia Kirk Blackwelder has drawn on company records as well as other archival and secondary sources and personal interviews to produce an engaging and multi-layered history of General Electric’s workplace culture and its planned (and actual) effects on community life. Her research demonstrates how business and community histories intersect, and this nuanced look at race, gender, and class sets a standard for corporate history.
The Politics of Policy Initiatives in Presidential Transitions
Identification, Ecology, Distribution, and History
An essential reference book for every collector and researcher of American seashells, Encyclopedia of Texas Seashells is a complete sourcebook and up-to-date identification guide, covering an unprecedented nine hundred species of seashells and mollusks that reside in the marine habitats of the Gulf of Mexico. Special features: Illustrated guide to the general features of mollusks Family overviews Descriptions of deep-water, tropical, coral reef, and bank species Information boxes on notable species Assemblage photos of dominant species in primary Texas habitats Checklist and glossary This reference contains 987 detailed and data-rich color images for even the tiniest shells, a valuable primer on shell collecting as a hobby, and a wealth of entries on the history of use and study, habitats and ecology, shell characteristics, distribution, biology, and identification. Covering species that range from Florida to South America, the Encyclopedia of Texas Seashells will also be a valuable resource for anyone interested in seashells of the Western Atlantic.