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Located in a California coastal range, Middleton Tract is a small residential community nestled in a second-growth redwood forest. Had successive waves of timber barons had their way, abandoned buildings and denuded hills might have been ripe for major development. Yet beginning in the 1920s, a descendant of a logging family capitalized on a changing view of nature. In the San Francisco Bay Area’s developing landscape, his plan set the stage for an ideal getaway from city life. The distance from civilization became a magic shield. The region’s steely ancestors knew how to work the land and its equally hard-working successors learned to preserve it. Stanford academics and members of San Francisco’s social and business communities were the first to enjoy the recovering forest and build log cabins. In the 1970s, the community’s tree huggers—a plucky band of preservationists—recognized warning signs and began to organize against the devastation threatened by renewed logging in the area. Mixing business people with professors and hippies with professionals, the rural community took advantage of their varied perspective to preserve its unique sense of history. This historical and humorous account draws on nearly twenty years of research, firsthand interviews with longtime residents and the author’s personal passion for the place she has called home for more than a quarter of a century. From Timber Barons to Tree Huggers: The Story of Middleton’s Redwood Community’s eighteen chapters cover 140 years of its history. More than sixty photographs and maps highlight the cultural and environmental change to create a moving record of a community that gave the forest a second chance.
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Sheri Jansen-Olliges has lived in one of Middleton Tract’s original log cabins for twenty-seven years and counting. She is a sixth generation Californian, and holds a B.A. in History from the University of California at Berkeley. Casual conversations with Middleton old-timers combined with her lifelong interest in history drove her to dig deeper into the community’s history, then publish this previously untold story.
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Book Description CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2012. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1469990083