Reflections on the Neches: A Naturalist's Odyssey along the Big Thicket's Snow River (Temple Big Thicket Series)

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9781574411607: Reflections on the Neches: A Naturalist's Odyssey along the Big Thicket's Snow River (Temple Big Thicket Series)
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When Geraldine Watson’s father was a teenager around the turn of the last century, he spent a summer floating down the Neches River, called Snow River by the Indians. Watson grew up hearing his tales of the steamboats, log rafts, and the flora and fauna of East Texas. So when she was sixty-three years old, she decided to repeat his odyssey in her own backwater boat.

Reflections on the Neches is both the story of her journey retracing her father’s steps and a natural and social history of the Neches region of the Big Thicket. The Neches, one of the last wild” rivers in Texas, is now being subjected to dams. Watson’s story captures the wildness of the river and imparts a detailed history of its people and wildlife. Profusely illustrated with drawings by the author and including maps of her journey, Reflections on the Neches will appeal to all those interested in the Big Thicket region and those indulging a feeling of wanderlust and float trips down the river.

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About the Author:

A native of Tyler County, GERALDINE ELLIS WATSON was a plant ecologist and park ranger for the National Park Service for fifteen years and the author of Big Thicket Plant Ecology.

Review:

Reflections is not a book to skim. It should be absorbed, ideally from a canoe drifting down current in the Snow River. This book is a captivating blend of art and history and biological facts from a writer whose heart and soul has been bound up in the Big Thicket for a long, adventuresome, and sometimes combative lifetime. . . . You will be riveted by her tales of the fabled Ivory-billed woodpecker.”—East Texas Historical Association Journal


“This book makes the Neches River come alive and makes the reader want to find the nearest canoe in order to travel in her footsteps to rediscover the beauty that exists around each river bend. . . . In addition to the expected exquisitely detailed travelogue, Watson adds her superior observations as a naturalist, sharing geographical, geological, hydrographic and biological information on the Neches, the Big Thicket and Southeast Texas in terms that a layman can understand.”—Texas Gulf Historical and Biographical Record


“Like the river, Reflections on the Neches has a natural flow; like the river, it is charming. One is easily drawn into the world of the river, and into the lives of its people.”—Pete A. Y. Gunter, author of The Big Thicket and co-editor of The Big Thicket Guidebook

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