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The Big Roads: The Untold Story of the Engineers, Visionaries, and Trailblazers Who Created the American Superhighways

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The Big Roads: The Untold Story of the Engineers, Visionaries, and Trailblazers Who Created the American Superhighways Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A man-made wonder, a connective network, an economic force, a bringer of blight and sprawl and the possibility of escape—the U.S. interstate system transformed America. The Big Roads presents the surprising history of how we got from dirt tracks to expressways in the space of a single lifetime.

Earl Swift brings to light the visionaries who created these essential highways as well as the critics and citizens who questioned their headlong expansion throughout the country, including:

  • Carl Fisher, the irrepressible car-racing entrepreneur who spurred the push for good roads in the early years of the automobile, built the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and made a fortune creating Miami Beach, only to lose it all;
  • Thomas MacDonald, chief among a handful of driven engineers who conceived of the interstates and how they would work, years before President Eisenhower knew the plans existed;
  • Lewis Mumford, the critic whose crusade against America's budding love affair with the automobile—and the ever bigger roads it required—now seems prescient;
  • Joe Wiles, an African American family man turned activist, one of thousands of ordinary citizens in dozens of cities who found their homes and communities targeted by the concrete juggernaut—and were unwilling to be uprooted in the name of progress.
In mapping a fascinating route through the dreams, discoveries, and protests that shaped these mighty roads, Swift shows that the interstates embody the wanderlust, grand scale, and conflicting notions of citizenship that define America.

Synopsis:

From author Earl Swift comes the surprising history of the U.S. interstate system, a fascinating route through the dreams, discoveries, and protests that shaped these mighty roads.

About the Author

Earl Swift is a five-time Pulitzer Prize nominee and the author of Journey on the James, the 2003 PEN finalist Where They Lay: Searching for America's Lost Soldiers, and the short story collection The Tangierman's Lament. He has written for newspapers in St. Louis, Anchorage, and Norfolk, Virginia, where his work won numerous state and national awards, and his writing has appeared in Parade magazine, Best Newspaper Writing, and River Teeth. Earl lives in Norfolk with his daughter, Saylor. Rob Shapiro got his professional start as an entertainer doing stand-up in Minneapolis while still in high school (the Children's Theatre Company and School of Minneapolis). As a voice-over artist, he can be heard narrating such audiobooks as the bestselling The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood by James Gleick, Frank: The Voice by James Kaplan, and the fantasy noir Low Town by Daniel Polansky. He performed several seasons of radio comedy on Minneapolis Public Radio and voiced the titular lion in Leo the Lion. Rob is also a musician and composer; with his critically acclaimed band, Populuxe, he has released two CDs-A Foggy Day in Brooklyn and Deep in an American Evening . . .-and the EP, Daphne. He is one half of the Velvet Collar, who released their first record, Double Standard, an unlikely collection of cover songs by the Stooges, Hoagy Carmichael, and the Gershwin Brothers, among others, in 2011. Finally, Rob is a business consultant and software system designer, specializing in desktop publishing and workflow efficiency, with clients and implemented systems spanning the globe.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781452635354
Author:
Swift, Earl
Publisher:
Tantor Audio
Author:
Shapiro, Rob
Location:
Old Saybrook
Subject:
General History
Subject:
World History-General
Edition Description:
Unabridged,Library - Unabridged CD
Publication Date:
20111231
Binding:
COMPACT DISC
Language:
English
Dimensions:
6.4 x 6.7 x 0.9 in 0.8 lb

Related Subjects

» History and Social Science » World History » General
» Reference » Science Reference » Technology

The Big Roads: The Untold Story of the Engineers, Visionaries, and Trailblazers Who Created the American Superhighways New Compact Disc
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Product details pages Tantor Media - English 9781452635354 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , From author Earl Swift comes the surprising history of the U.S. interstate system, a fascinating route through the dreams, discoveries, and protests that shaped these mighty roads.

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