I knew very little about Montana before we decided to settle down here so I love to learn about this new state I call home. I thank the publisher for sending me a copy of Seven Montanas at no charge for my honest review.
About Seven Montanas:
The vast space of the American West that has been designated as the state of Montana is such a diverse and varied landscape that it’s been said it could easily be sliced up into several smaller states. And with its smorgasbord of industry, history, culture and the various worldviews held by its residents, getting a bead on Montana’s personality is a challenge. That may be because Montana, in fact, has several fairly distinct personalities. This book examines those personalities, through the lens of seven geographic and cultural regions commonly recognized in the state. While Montanans share a few attitudes and love of the land that attracts them to Big Sky country, it’s the differences between the regions that truly give the state its unique flavor. Through interviews, photos, history and personal observations, Therriault profiles each region and in the process gives a more complete view of the state as a whole. Along the way the reader will learn why some people choose to live where they do, how they view the rest of the state, and what some of the factors are that give each region its singularity.
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About the Author:
Ednor Therriault has spent more than 20 years exploring Montana from corner to corner. He’s authored two editions of Montana Curiosities, revised the current edition of Montana Off the Beaten Path, and has completed work on Yellowstone Myths and Legends, which includes in-depth historical information on Montana’s gateway communities of Gardiner and West Yellowstone.
Therriault brings the wit of a humorist, the fact-finding tenacity of a journalist, and a deep Montana pedigree to his work. His father, a decorated Marine pilot, was born in Missoula. His great-great-grandparents homesteaded along Douglas Creek in the Flint Valley in the late 1800s, and his grandfather mined for gold in Garnet, now Montana’s best-preserved ghost town. Therriault also studies Native American history, and recognizes the importance of including Indian culture and narratives in his depictions of the complex history of Montana.
This is a very interesting book for anyone interested in the state of Montana; whether you live here, want to live her or just love the lore of this big state. There have been many book written about Montana – it is a very diverse state geologically from the Rocky Mountains in the west to the plains of the east. In fact as the title of the book offers, there are seven Montanas; Missouri River Country, Custer Country, Yellowstone Country, Russell Country, Gold West Country, and Glacier Country.
Each “country” is presented through stories from people past and present to showcase what makes the area special and what is special about each area. Montana rightly claims Glacier National Park and also claims Yellowstone even though the bulk of the park resides in Wyoming.
I have said and continue to say that Montana is the most scenic place I have ever seen and I have been some pretty beautiful places. There is also a lot of history in this state that covers so much area it goes from time zone to time zone. It is also one of the more sparsely populated states – it’s only been within the last 8 years or so that the population has crested one million. It’s a land of mountains, trees, rivers and plains.
The book illustrates the stories with some beautiful and evocative black and white photos. I will admit that I first paged through to just look through the photos before I even started reading. It is an interesting look at a widely diverse state with a rich history.