Pulitzer Prize winner Wallace Stegner recounts the remarkable career of Major John Wesley Powell, the distinguished ethnologist and geologist who explored the Colorado River, the Grand Canyon, and the homeland of the Southwest Indian tribes. This classic work is a penetrating and insightful study of the Powell's career, from the beginning of the Powell Survey, in which Powell and his men famously became the first to descend the Colorado River, to his eventual ouster from the Geological Survey. In masterful prose, Stegner details the expedition, as well as the philosophies and ideas that drove Powell.… (more)
On July 4, 1868, about the time when Henry Adams was turning back toward New York to face a new and sharply altered America after ten years of study and diplomacy in the service of the old, two men who would have been worth his attention as a historian were going about their business on the western edge of the Great Plains.
But from the river bluffs where we have symbolically planted him, looking over the West that was his province, he can perhaps contemplate the truly vortical, corkscrew path of human motion and with some confidence wait for the future to catch up with him.