Continental Divide: A History of American Mountaineering

Continental Divide: A History of American Mountaineering

This magesterial and exciting historical past argues that the tale of yank climbing is the tale of the US itself.

In Continental Divide, Maurice Isserman tells the heritage of yank climbing via 4 centuries of landmark climbs and primary ascents. Mountains have been initially noticeable as hindrances to civilization; over the years they got here to be seen as locations of redemption and renewal. The White Mountains stirred the transcendentalists; the Rockies and Sierras pulled explorers westward towards appear future; Yosemite encouraged the early environmental conservationists.

Climbing all started in North the United States as a pursuit for lone eccentrics yet turned a mass-participation recreation. starting with Darby box in 1642, the 1st individual to climb a mountain in North the USA, Isserman describes the exploration and primary ascents of the main American mountain levels, from the Appalachians to Alaska. He additionally profiles an important American mountaineers, together with such figures as John C. Frémont, John Muir, Annie Peck, Bradford Washburn, Charlie Houston, and Bob Bates, pertaining to their exploits either at domestic and abroad.

Isserman strains the evolving social, cultural, and political roles mountains performed in shaping the rustic. He describes how American mountaineers cast a "brotherhood of the rope," modeled on America’s designated democratic self-image that characterised mountain climbing within the years major as much as and instantly following international conflict II. And he underscores the influence of the postwar "rucksack revolution," together with the advances in strategy and magnificence made via pioneering "dirtbag" rock climbers.

A incredible, deeply researched background, Continental Divide tells a narrative of experience and aspiration within the excessive peaks that makes a vibrant case for the significance of mountains to American nationwide identity.

sixty five illustrations

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