Synopses & Reviews
This is a lively history of three Rocky Mountain states in the twentieth century. With the sure hand of an experienced writer and the engaging voice of a veteran storyteller, the well-known historian Duane Smith recounts the major social, political, and economic events of the period with verve and zest. It is obvious that Smith is thoroughly familiar with his subject and has a genuine enthusiasm for the history of the region. Written with the general reader in mind, Rocky Mountain Heartland will appeal to students, teachers, and armchair historians” of all ages. This is the colorful saga of how the Old West became the New West. Beginning at the end of the nineteenth century and concluding after the turn of the twentyfirst, Rocky Mountain Heartland explains how Colorado, Montana, and Wyoming evolved over the course of the century. Smith is mindful of all the factors that propelled the region: mining, agriculture, water, immigration, tourism, technology, and two world wars. And he points out how the three states responded in varying ways to each of these forces. Although this is a regional story, Smith never loses sight of the national events that influenced events in the region. As Smith skillfully shows, the vast natural resources of the three states attracted optimistic, hopeful Americans intent on getting rich, enjoying the outdoors, or creating new lives for themselves and their families. How they resolved these often conflicting goals is the modern story of the Rocky Mountain region.
About the Author
Duane A. Smith is professor of Southwest studies and history at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado, where he has taught for more than forty years. He is the author of more than forty books, including Henry M. Teller: Colorado's Grand Old Man. He is the recipient of many awards, including the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) Colorado Professor of the Year award and the American Association for State and Local History Award for Contributions to the History of the Rocky Mountain West.