I just have to share that my newest nonfiction book, HISTORIC REDWOOD NATIONAL AND STATE PARKS, from Lyons Press, has just been released. In celebration ---- please leave a comment, and on Wednesday, I will draw a name -- the winner to receive a signed copy of the paperback.
Perhaps share about your own trek to the redwoods --- have you been recently? Did you know how amazing and unique these trees are.....?
Did you know, for example, that a redwood cone is about the size of an
OLIVE and contains anywhere from 60 to 120 seeds; it takes more than
100,000 seeds to weigh a pound....and while one tree can drop 10 MILLION
seeds, only a few will mature. Moreover, though redwoods can be made to
grow in other environments, the giant redwoods need a specific habitat
-- the 250-mile-long north-south belt that stretches from 1 to 2 miles
offshore to not more than 50 miles inland. They thrive in the coastal
fog belt and create their own "microclimate" because of it. Through
transpiration, each tree can release five hundred gallons of water into
the air every day; a large redwood actually holds about 34,000 pounds of
Amazing? Absolutely! Unique? Undoubtedly......
As a way of sharing the inspiration behind this new book, this is what I wrote as part of the Introduction....
"...when you truly get off the beaten track and immerse yourself in the deep shade and overwhelmingly peaceful and stunning world found within, under, and around the Tall Trees, it takes your breath away. In the silence you have to sigh and inhale deeply; even the scent of the trees and abounding undergrowth awakes the deepest part of your nature. Finally you begin to sense the otherworldly character of these ancient, massive trees. They speak of time -- and the passage of time. Some are six hundred years old; some are a thousand years old. A few are, perhaps, two thousand years old. Some stand over 350 feet tall, with a girth of 15-20 feet. Whatever their height or breadth, however, they are magnificent. They are awe-inspiring, and they speak of a past cloaked in mystery and rich history."
The project, which was offered me one year ago, was one I wasn't necessarily seeking, but of course, I jumped at the opportunity. I always love history and the history of the region where I live is something I relish. The project was intense and required a lot of heavy research as well as travel (but whoever objects to travel?!). I found the subject wonderfully challenging and much more involved than I realized at the onset. There has been a convoluted history to the development of the Redwood National Park (not created until 1968). That it was eventually incorporated with three state parks was also a process.
The deadline for putting HISTORIC REDWOOD NATIONAL AND STATE PARKS together came quickly, and the final manuscript went through several revisions. But I believe that has made it a better volume for anyone who wants a survey of the history of -- not only the Parks themselves -- but the immediate vicinity.
The book is more conversational in style -- not a typical "history" -- but more of a series of
essay-formatted chapters. Hopefully, the book will bring alive the trees
that are unique and timeless, from ancient times to pre-contact and tribal histories, through the gold rush and settlement periods, to the era of big logging and then to the present development of the state and national park -- in addition to sidebars of interest and personages of importance. In addition, the book features historic photos. Some of the chapter titles include: Those Amazing Redwoods: How They Came to Be; How Native Americans' Roots Are Connected to the Redwoods; Gold Brings Men and Violence to the Redwood Country; Logging: How the Redwoods Became a Source of Wealth; Conservation Grows Out of Fear; The Redwood Highway Cuts a Path through the Trees; and more.....
The book is available on amazon.com and should be available through bookstores, as well.
As Minni Reeves, Chilulua tribal leader and religious leader, Hupa Indian Reservation, said in a 1976 interview: "The redwood trees have a lot of power; they are the tallest, live the longest, and are the most beautiful trees in the world. Destroy these trees and you destroy the Creator's love. And if you destroy that which the Creator loves so much, you will eventually destroy mankind."
So share a comment --- share your own experience with the redwoods --- and I'll be drawing a name for a free copy of HISTORIC REDWOOD NATIONAL AND STATE PARKS.
And don't forget to visit YOUR nearest National Park this year in celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the NPS....and if you have never been to the
redwoods or haven't been there recently, I recommend it as one of the
West's most outstanding parks.
Across the Sweet Grass Hills, published by Prairie Rose Publishing.
Check out her website: www.gailjenner.com
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