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Keith Petersen '73

Fall 2009

“They are all Red Out Here”: Socialist Politics in the Pacific Northwest, 1895-1925

"They are all Red Out Here": Socialist Politics in the Pacific Northwest, 1895-1925 book cover

Jeffrey A. Johnson
University of Oklahoma Press, 2008

Few if any aspects of the Northwest’s political and labor history have been so thoroughly documented as the region’s most radical era, from the 1890s to the First World War. Books and articles have highlighted such topics as the rise of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), Idaho Governor Frank Steunenberg’s … » More …

Winter 2008

Conquistador: Hernan Cortés, King Montezuma, and the Last Stand of the Aztecs

I suspect I am a good example of the intended audience for this book, which is a popular account of the strange, tragic relationship between Cortés and Montezuma, and the destruction of a way of life. I can’t remember reading anything about Cortés or Montezuma since high school, other than an occasional National Geographic article. So, I am not the best person to comment on the scholarship. But I can comment on the readability as a popular history, and Levy captured me in the initial pages. He has a way of spinning a good story, of keeping the pages turning, and as the pages turn, … » More …

Summer 2003

Anaconda: Labor, Community and Culture in Montana's Smelter City

Anaconda, in southwest Montana, was home to the world’s largest copper smelter. Marcus Daly established the first smelter in 1884. In 1980, the last plant closed its doors. Anaconda deals primarily with the community from the 1930s through the 1970s, and focuses on social life, work, unions, and the role of women in an industrialized western town.

An associate professor of history at Washington State University at Vancouver, Laurie Mercier undertook much of the research for Anaconda while she served as state oral historian for Montana.

The strength of Mercier’s work is her attention to women. She doesn’t ignore the male story, but she continually … » More …

Fall 2006

Idaho's Bunker Hill: The Rise and Fall of a Great Mining Company, 1885

Bunker Hill finally has a book worthy of its story. BH, during its heyday, was one of the nation’s most important mining and smelting operations, and wielded unprecedented influence over Idaho politics. At the time it closed in 1981 it produced 15 percent of America’s silver and zinc, and 17 percent of its lead. Much has been written about BH. But this is the first book to encapsulate its entire history, from lode discovery to company closure.

Aiken weaves together many stories. Hers is one of the best tellings of the oft-romanticized origins of the mine that Noah Kellogg’s donkey might or might not have … » More …

Summer 2008

Bunion Derby: The 1928 Footrace Across America

Charles B. Kastner ’81
University of New Mexico Press, 2007

For generations, the 1920s have provided fodder for authors. The super-hyped sensationalism of those ballyhooed years seems a bottomless pool of entertaining topics. The decade of Lindbergh, Valentino, Capone, and Ruth, of flappers, Mah Jong, crossword puzzles, and marathon dances, also produced the Bunion Derby, a marathon footrace across America. It is to his credit that Seattle author Charles Kastner (’81 M.A. History) not only … » More …