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A beautifully illustrated history of one of North America's most enduring cultural symbols and recreational pastimes.There is hardly a river or lake in North America that was not first seen from the gunwale of a canoe. Centuries before the invention of the train and the motorboat, canoes were used for exploration, trade, war, and the hunt. Indians crafted canoes out of dugout logs, birch bark, and animal hides; French colonists employed courier canoes; and the Spanish explorers brought cane and woodcrafts with them to new lands. The canoe has brought together Native Americans and European colonists, promoted exploration, and changed the economy forever with the onset of the fur trade. Hundreds of years later, it continues to hold practical, ceremonial, and totemic significance for many North Americans. The Canoe: An Illustrated History explores the role of this elegantly simple craft in history and modern culture. With accounts of historic canoe trips and infamous battles, detailed explanations of Native American canoe-building techniques, and more than 80 photographs, The Canoe is a must-read for paddlers and history buffs alike. A beautiful package. 45 color photographs.
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Jim Poling, Sr. is the retired general manager and editor of The Canadian Press news agency. He is the author of The Canoe: An Illustrated History, also published by Key Porter Books, and is a frequent contributor to Cottage Life and Ontario Out of Doors magazines.
Kim Stallknech is an award-winning photographer based in Vancouver.From Booklist:
What do Nelson Eddy, Jeanette MacDonald, Pierre Trudeau, Marilyn Monroe, and Eric Sevareid have in common? According to this entertaining history, all of them experienced defining moments in a canoe. Enlivening his story with dry humor, Poling moves through the long, sometimes obscure history of the canoe as easily as if he were paddling a calm lake at dawn. He captures the canoe's central role in the lives of Stone Age people, Native Americans, European explorers, and Canadian and American fur traders, and he describes the way contemporary North Americans have made the canoe not only a source of recreation but also a link to the continent's history. Combining careful research with unbridled enthusiasm, and making the most of a well-chosen selection of black-and-white and color photos, Poling almost makes the reader believe that canoes are the world's most perfect transportation. John Rowen
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