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Old 12-21-2014   #11
Jenks, Oklahoma
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,407
Tom's book covers a subject many of us are very interested in. Me for sure.

I am glad Tom did the research, wrote the book and let me know the book is available via a post here.

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Old 12-21-2014   #12
Colo Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 597
I find Grand Canyon history always interesting. I've heard of Marston's work for a long time. There should be some interest in this.

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Old 12-21-2014   #13
Tom Martin's Avatar
Flagstaff, Arizona
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 817
Randaddy, Don, Dave and Okie, thanks for your kind thoughts. This was a long journey indeed. Here's how it happened...

To get into the Huntington to look at the Marston Collection, I needed to get two Huntington readers to write me letters of recommendation. Then I headed to LA and went through the Huntington new-reader orientation, and was finally "in."

I had heard of the manuscript, but at the time it was not listed in the index of material in the collection. I finally got the call numbers, and then could look at the manuscript.

What I saw really looked cool, not for the writting style, but for the historical data. It was packed with a Grand Canyon who's who. Here's an example of what I saw from Marston's chapter on Norm Nevills, titled Petticoats. Here, Marston is describing the 1938 Grand Canyon trip where Elzada Clover got the trip through the Grand Canyon. The crew is at Upset Rapid:

"Kolb over emphasized his warnings at Upset Rapid, named in honor of his 1923 upset in it. In this rapid, Bell eased over a rock while sneaking left, whereupon Nevills exposed his feelings by scolding his boatmen and, in turn, was lectured by Miss Clover on how to handle men. Bell “God damn near hit him over the head with an oar” and would have hit Nevills, but he feared breaking the oar and none could be spared."

I had never read anything so real about that 1938 river trip before.

So, we started into negotiations to publish with the Huntington and the Marston family. At that time, my hard suffering sweetie, Hazel, got letters of support and reading privileges too.

Each reader gets 30 minutes twice a day to photograph material. Over a solid week, and limited by the Library rules to four 30 minute periods a day for photo work between the two of us, we took over 1,600 photos of every page of the work, including hundreds of back pages covered with hand written notes. This was after we went through multiple drafts of each chapter to find the most complete draft.

Once home, I read the entire manuscript from the photos into the computer with voice recognition software. Then, I read the electronic version while either Bill Bishop or Christian Wright read the original out loud. We took turns at it as well. These two gents did some very heavy lifting and I am indebted to them both for their willingness to see this through. The two-person read made sure the electronic copy had all the original manuscript material is order in a way that made timeline sense. Dock was a little casual in that regard.

Then I went through the electronic version yet again, before we sent the various chapters out to over two dozen reviewers. Hazel started the layout, and we were fortunate to have a retired highschool English teacher friend go through the entire manuscript yet one more time. Sandy Muleady got the bid for the cover art, and we put out bids for the printing. Then, we put up the cash and had the work published. Sheridan Books did the printing, by the way. Excellent folks to work with.

Not quite as logistically challenging as organizing a Grand Canyon river trip, but hey, all credit to Dock Marston! He was the one who grabbed the tiger by the tail in writing the history of the first 100 river runners, or grandcanyoneers as he called them, to go through Grand Canyon from Lee's Ferry to the Grand Wash Cliffs.

That's why I was asking Johnryan what he had... If he had done all this for a book about Grand Canyon history, I would have bought a book from him this morning...

All the best to you all, tom
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Old 12-21-2014   #14
Randaddy's Avatar
Eastern Slope, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,404
Quite a project Tom - it sounds like the effort preserved some cool early Canyon history. I'll have to order a copy after the holidays. Hopefully the hard cover is still available and you have a pretty autograph!
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Old 12-21-2014   #15
Tom Martin's Avatar
Flagstaff, Arizona
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 817
Autograph is not THAT pretty Randaddy. If we plow through the 100 numbered/stamped/signed hardcovers (down to 30 now) we have 12 hardcover overrun copies (they will be labeled as such), and then poof! All gone. Sorry, poor planning on our part. We NEVER dreamed that we would move through the hard covers at this rate...
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Old 12-22-2014   #16
Buffalo, New York
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 109
Thanks for the back story Tom, it didn't sound like an easy job to put all this together. looking forward to getting a copy.
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Old 12-23-2014   #17
Redmond, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1973
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,031
Originally Posted by johnryan View Post
Buy my book! Buy my book!
I bought his book. I bought his book.
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Old 12-24-2014   #18
Old Guy in a PFD
Tucson, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1967
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,022
Damit! I wanted the hardcover, but all gone.
that's what I get for not checking the site every day.
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Old 12-24-2014   #19
90Duck's Avatar
Bend, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1992
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 282
Tom - sounds like a great read, and sorry I missed the hardcover run. I really enjoyed your previous Big Water, Little Boats and look forward to more of your signature style of meticulous research of little known tales of The Canyon.

Hate to quibble, but you noted $5 shipping in your initial post but when I go to order, it goes straight to "air service" and wants to charge $10 on the Vishnu Temple Press website. I'm anxious to read it, but not in that big of a hurry!

Is there an error on the Vishnu Press site or was the $5 shipping a limited time thing?
Show me your OOOOOO face
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Old 12-24-2014   #20
Tom Martin's Avatar
Flagstaff, Arizona
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 817
Well spotted 90Duck. I apologize for the confusion! The Soft Cover is available via the River Runners For Wilderness store at $30 with $5 shipping media mail.
The Soft Cover is available via Vishnu Temple Press at $30 with $10 shipping priority mail.
Vishnu Temple Press... Grand Canyon and Colorado River books.
And there-in lies the difference! Thank you for asking for a clarification!

And thank you for your kind note on research... following in the footsteps of Marston is intimidating, especially as he was a real stickler for the facts, with amazing source material to back up his writing. There is another Grand Canyon river tales book bubbling away on the back burner, and the research for that is a lot of fun!

Let's see what the next few years bring. Thank you again, yours, tom

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