Continental Divide: A History of American Mountaineering

Continental Divide: A History of American Mountaineering

Maurice Isserman / Aug 11, 2020

Continental Divide A History of American Mountaineering In Continental Divide Maurice Isserman tells the history of American mountaineering through four centuries of landmark climbs and first ascents Mountains were originally seen as obstacles to civiliza

  • Title: Continental Divide: A History of American Mountaineering
  • Author: Maurice Isserman
  • ISBN: 9780393353761
  • Page: 257
  • Format: Paperback
  • In Continental Divide, Maurice Isserman tells the history of American mountaineering through four centuries of landmark climbs and first ascents Mountains were originally seen as obstacles to civilization over time they came to be viewed as places of redemption and renewal The White Mountains stirred the transcendentalists the Rockies and Sierras pulled explorers westwIn Continental Divide, Maurice Isserman tells the history of American mountaineering through four centuries of landmark climbs and first ascents Mountains were originally seen as obstacles to civilization over time they came to be viewed as places of redemption and renewal The White Mountains stirred the transcendentalists the Rockies and Sierras pulled explorers westward toward Manifest Destiny Yosemite inspired the early environmental conservationists.Climbing began in North America as a pursuit for lone eccentrics but grew to become a mass participation sport Beginning with Darby Field in 1642, the first person to climb a mountain in North America, Isserman describes the exploration and first ascents of the major American mountain ranges, from the Appalachians to Alaska He also profiles the most important American mountaineers, including such figures as John C Fr mont, John Muir, Annie Peck, Bradford Washburn, Charlie Houston, and Bob Bates, relating their exploits both at home and abroad.Isserman traces the evolving social, cultural, and political roles mountains played in shaping the country He describes how American mountaineers forged a brotherhood of the rope, modeled on America s unique democratic self image that characterized climbing in the years leading up to and immediately following World War II And he underscores the impact of the postwar rucksack revolution, including the advances in technique and style made by pioneering dirtbag rock climbers.A magnificent, deeply researched history, Continental Divide tells a story of adventure and aspiration in the high peaks that makes a vivid case for the importance of mountains to American national identity.

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      Published :2020-05-24T18:44:04+00:00

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      • Maurice Isserman

        Maurice Isserman Is a well-known author, some of his books are a fascination for readers like in the Continental Divide: A History of American Mountaineering book, this is one of the most wanted Maurice Isserman author readers around the world.


    969 Comments

    1. After reading a lukewarm review in the Times, I was just mildly interested in reading this one. But then I actually read it, and - granted, after sorta slogging through the first 100-some pages - had trouble putting it down. Yes, the story basically ends in 1964, which of course leaves out a good bit of mountaineering. But there's little here that doesn't need to be here, so perhaps someone else might write a book about the last 50 years of U.S. mountaineering. I found Isserman's history inspira [...]


    2. I was unimpressed with this book. In part, because I've read so much about mountaineering and the memoirs of mountaineers, that this book didn't tell me much I didn't already know. And also because I've read Isserman's book (written w/Stewart Weaver) "Fallen Giants: The History of Himalayan Mountaineering from the Age of Empire to the Age of Extremes," and that liberally covered American moutaineers' expeditions in the Himalayas, some of which were repeated here. What was new to me was the histo [...]


    3. In sixteen hundred and forty-two,American made first mountain feat.In nineteen hundred and sixty-three,Americans peaked Everest too.


    4. A history of Americans in the mountains since 1642! An excellent, wide ranging, overview that includes America's changing relationship with wilderness and the individuals that framed that relationship from Thoreau to Chounard, from the Pilgrims to REI. Very well written, thoroughly enjoyed.


    5. An enjoyable and interesting work that brought to light several of the developments toward American mountaineering, going from the early summits in the White Mountains, to the founding of climbing clubs, and then the rise of Yosemite rock climbing. The author includes the expeditions into Alaska and Himalayas, along with their impact on the climbing clubs and community. The history trails off as the last golden age (60s) passes into history leaving out my favorite climber (and other contemporary [...]


    6. Another beautifully written, impecably researched book about mountains. Just a tad short - as are most of the 70 - 80 mountaineering books in my library - of Isserman's (with Stewart Weaver), "Fallen Giants", the most informative, important book ever written about Himalayan mountaineering. I've read most of it twice now, and still consult it often as I finish my second novel, based on women climbers conquering all fourteen of the 8,000 meter mountains. I consider "Fallen Giants" one of my best f [...]


    7. It was good, if a little dry in places. The author framed mountain climbing in cultural and social ways that were mostly successful. There were many, many interesting individuals and movements. It ranged from wacky individualists to self-promoters to big organizations of mountain climbers. There are a lot of interesting anecdotes. It somehow just didn't all come together like it could have. I love hiking to the tops of mountains, and this book has furthered my resolve of continuing with that rat [...]


    8. A very detailed book about the history of climbers originating from the U.S. You have to be into this topic and crave the detail of mountain climbing to enjoy the book. For me personally, it was a bit too detailed.


    9. The book does a good job of walking the line between being a readable armchair history of mountaineering and a thoughtful scholarly work.



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