Every month we add dozens of new titles to our Western History collection that are aimed at helping researchers get a better picture of both the history, and future, of the Trans-Mississippi West. Here are just a few examples of our newly arrived titles.
Pemmican Empire: Food, Trade, and the Last Bison Hunts in the North American Plains, 1780-1882, George Colpitts (Cambridge Press, 2015) - It's practically impossible to overstate the importance of the vast herds of North American Bison (aka, Buffalo) that once roamed the Western plains. These magnificent animals not only provided a ready source of food for the indigenous people of North America, they were also the fuel for the economic engine that helped build North America into what it is today.
One of the most important products natives and Europeans manufactured from bison was pemmican. Pemmican, a concoction of dried meat, fat and fruits, fed plains dwellers for centuries and was prized as a food that was easy to store and, in the absence of other food sources, could sustain human life all on its own.
In this well-researched effort, George Colpitts focuses on how pemmican production helped feed the people of the Northern Plains and, as is so often the case, how overproduction of pemmican helped bring about the end of those magnificent buffalo herds and the plains way of life.
The Denver Artists Guild, Its Founding Members: An Illustrated History, Stan Cuba (History Colorado, 2015) - Founded in 1928, the Denver Artists Guild (now the Colorado Artists Guild) is one of the oldest art institutions in the state of Colorado. In the ensuing years, the Guild hosted dozens of events and helped elevate the careers of local artists Vance Kirkland, Vance Evans and many, many more.
Whether you're familiar with Denver's art history or just getting acquainted with it, this title is an invaluable resource that lays out the incredible depth of Centennial State artistry.
Dalton Trumbo: Blacklisted Hollywood Radical, Larry Caplair and Christopher Trumbo (University Press of Kentucky, 2015) - In the years following World War II, America was in the grips of full blown anti-Communist hysteria and Colorado-born Hollywood screenwriter Dalton Trumbo found himself at the center of that shameful episode.
Trumbo was one of just a handful of writers who refused to testify in front of the notorious Senator Joseph McCarthy's House Un-American Affairs Committee (HUAC) and paid a dear price for his courage. Trumbo was blacklisted from working in Hollywood for years, though he was eventually brought back into the business and penned such Hollywood classics as, Spartacus and Exodus.
The story of Trumbo's battle against the enemies of free speech is one that's well worth remembering and is told in exacting details by the authors of Blacklisted Hollywood Radical - including Trumbo's son, Christopher. Trumbo is honored for his courage with a statue at CU-Boulder, his alma mater, where the University Memorial Center Fountain is named in his honor.