464 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 51 illus., 7 maps, notes, bibl., index
A Blue Ridge Parkway History
The most visited site in the National Park system, the 469-mile Blue Ridge Parkway winds along the ridges of the Appalachian mountains in Virginia and North Carolina. According to most accounts, the Parkway was a New Deal "Godsend for the needy," built without conflict or opposition by landscape architects and planners who traced their vision along a scenic, isolated southern landscape. The historical archives relating to this massive public project, however, tell a different and much more complicated story, which Anne Mitchell Whisnant relates in this revealing history of the beloved roadway.
"Elegantly reveals the Parkway's history. . . . Decidedly revisionist . . . presents a more complex history of the road. . . . Whisnant's engagingly written and carefully researched account brings to light a more accurate picture of how the Blue Ridge Parkway came to be while taking nothing away from the . . . site."
"[A] lucid analysis. . . . [Whisnant's] work provides vital lessons on historic and environmental preservation."
--The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography
"The deliberate, scholarly work promises, in the author's words, to 'take us from a place many think they understand to one few would recognize, along a Blue Ridge Parkway almost no one knows.' Strap in and hold tight."
"By sifting through various myths and facts, Whisnant reveals the truth behind the Parkway's seemingly undisturbed serene beauty."
--Rocky Mount Telegram
"Whisnant brings the true parkway to light in a skillful demonstration of the historian's craft at the highest level of excellence--thoroughly researched, especially well documented and presented. . . . Highly recommended."
© 2012 The University of North Carolina Press
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