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The Book of Woodcraft, originally published in 1921, is an illustrated classic work on the skills that made Boy Scouts reach deep into the hearts of America's youth. It's all here in 15 sections: Principles of Woodcraft, The Spartans of the West, (a book on Native Americans), Woodland Songs, Dances and Ceremonies, Suggested Programs, General Scouting Indoors, General Scouting Outdoors, Signaling and Indian Signs, Camper-craft or the Summer Camp, Games for the Camp, Health and Woodland Medicine, Natural History, Mushrooms Fungi or Toadstools, Forestry, Some Indian Ways, and Campfire Stories or Glimpses of Indian Character.
About the Author
Ernest Seton-Thompson (1860-1946) was a naturalist and writer who was an early practitioner of the modern school of animal-fiction writing. Deeply concerned with the future of the prairie, Seton fought vigorously to establish reservations for Indians and parks for animals threatened by extinction. In order to provide children with the opportunities for nature study, he founded the Woodcraft Indians in 1902 and later was chairman of the committee that established the Boy Scouts of America. He is the author of dozens of books and pamphlets celebrating the American wilderness, and had any number of strong opinions. For one thing, he believed that a civilization whose members were physically weak was doomed to collapse. For another thing, he exalted American Indians as people who shunned avarice, "sought for the beautiful in everything," and lived in harmony with nature. And for another thing, he believed that to try at something and to fail at it was infinitely better than not! trying at all - and that no one was quite so distasteful as a quitter.
Seton was raised in North America, his family having immigrated to Canada in 1866. Drawn to nature, Seton resisted his family's attempt to make an artist of him. He gained experience as a naturalist by trailing and hunting in the prairie country of Manitoba in the final years of the 19th century. He used this knowledge as the basis for his animal stories. His artistic training enabled him to earn a living for a time as an illustrator of wild animals. He continued to write such books into the 1940s.
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"After all I have written about Whitman, I feel at times that the main thing I wanted to say about him I have not said, cannot say; the best about him cannot be told anyway. His full significance in connection with the great modern movement; how he embodies it all and speaks out of it, and yet maintains his hold upon the primitive, the aboriginal; how he presupposes science and culture, yet draws his strength from that which antedates these things; how he glories in the present, and yet is sustained and justified by the past; how he is the poet of America and the modern, and yet translates these things into universal truths; how he is the poet of wickedness, while yet every fiber of him is sound and good; how his page is burdened with the material, the real, the contemporary, while yet his hold upon the ideal, the spiritual, never relaxes; how he is the poet of the soul; in fact, how all contradictions are finally reconciled in him, - all these things and more,! I say, I feel that I have not set forth with the clearness and emphasis the subject demanded. Other students of him will approach him on other lines, and will disclose meanings that I have missed."
John BurroughsAbout the Author:
JOHN BURROUGHS, USAF, Ret., served twenty-seven years in active and reserve duty in the US Air Force. He is the co-author of" Encounter in Rendlesham Forest." He is currently a lecturer and presenter on the Rendlesham Forest Incident and other related events.
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