Arc of the Medicine Line: Mapping the World's Longest Undefended Border across the Western Plains

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9780803217911: Arc of the Medicine Line: Mapping the World's Longest Undefended Border across the Western Plains
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Today the borderland between Canada and the United States is a wide, empty sweep of wheat fields and pasture, measured by a grid of gravel roads that sees little traffic and few people who do not make their lives there. It has been much this way for more than a century now, but there was a moment when the great silence shrouding this place was broken, and that moment changed it forever. Arc of the Medicine Line is a compelling narrative of that moment—the completion of the official border between the United States and Canada in 1874. In late July of 1874, the Sweetgrass Hills sheltered the greatest accumulation of scientists, teamsters, scouts, cooks, and soldiers to be seen in this part of the world before the coming of the railways. The men of the boundary commissions—American, British, and Canadian—established an astronomical station and the last of their supply depots as they prepared to draw the Medicine Line across the final hundred of the nearly nine hundred miles between Manitoba’s Lake of the Woods and the Continental Divide. In the brief weeks the surveyors and soldiers spent in Milk River country, they witnessed, and played a singular part in, the beginning of the end for the open West. That hot, dry summer of 1874 marked the outside world’s final assault on this last frontier.

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About the Author:

Tony Rees is the author of Hope’s Last Home: Travels in Milk River Country and Polo: The Galloping Game.

Review:

“Rees presents the story of the [mapping] expedition in detail. . . . [He] handles his subject well and provides enough story background that the history never grinds. The boundary, the border, was called the Medicine Line by the Sioux who later, led by Sitting Bull, fled the U.S. Cavalry after their victory at Little Big Horn to find safety above the line where pursuit magically stopped. Latitude 49 degrees north had ‘strong medicine.’”—Montana Quarterly (Montana Quarterly 2009-04-22)

“Tony Rees’s historical study is a welcome addition to our bookshelves.”—Richard H. Dillon, True West (True West 2009-04-22)

"This is a welcome new study of the British and American boundary commissions that, between 1872 and 1874, surveyed and marked the last stretch of the border between the US and Canada."—M. J. Van de Logt, Choice (M. J. Van de Logt Choice)

"Arc of the Medicine Line leaves readers with a fuller appreciation of the extraordinary labor involved in drawing boundaries, and a deeper sense of how making and sustaining borders reflects a profound commitment to such lines and distinctions. It is an exceptional work on narrative history, effortless to read and enjoy."—J. Wendel Cox, Western Historical Quarterly (J. Wendel Cox Western Historical Quarterly)

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9781553654193: Arc of the Medicine Line: Mapping the World's Longest Undefended Border Across the Western Plains

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  1553654196 ISBN 13:  9781553654193
Publisher: Douglas & McIntyre Ltd, 2009
Softcover

9781553652786: Arc of the Medicine Line: Mapping the World's Longest Undefended Border Across the Western Plains

Dougla..., 2008
Hardcover

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Rees, Tony.
Published by University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln (2008)
ISBN 10: 0803217919 ISBN 13: 9780803217911
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Book Description University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, 2008. Hardcover. Condition: New. First Edition. 390 pages. Hardcover with dustjacket. New book. AMERICAN WEST. Today the borderland between Canada and the United States is a wide, empty sweep of wheat fields and pasture, measured by a grid of gravel roads that sees little traffic and few people who do not make their lives there. It has been much this way for more than a century now, but there was a moment when the great silence shrouding this place was broken, and that moment changed it forever. Arc of the Medicine Line is a compelling narrative of that moment—the completion of the official border between the United States and Canada in 1874. In late July of 1874, the Sweetgrass Hills sheltered the greatest accumulation of scientists, teamsters, scouts, cooks, and soldiers to be seen in this part of the world before the coming of the railways. The men of the boundary commissions—American, British, and Canadian—established an astronomical station and the last of their supply depots as they prepared to draw the Medicine Line across the final hundred of the nearly nine hundred miles between Manitoba's Lake of the Woods and the Continental Divide. In the brief weeks the surveyors and soldiers spent in Milk River country, they witnessed, and played a singular part in, the beginning of the end for the open West. That hot, dry summer of 1874 marked the outside world's final assault on this last frontier. Tony Rees is the author of Hope's Last Home: Travels in Milk River Country and Polo: The Galloping Game. (Key Words: Western Plains, Mapping, Borders, Tony Rees, Medicine Line, Sweetgrass Hills, Boundary Commission, United States, Canada, 1874).0cv xxx, book. Seller Inventory # 55808X1

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