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Astoria: John Jacob Astor And Thomas Jefferson's Lost Pacific Empire: A Story Of Wealth, Ambition, And Survival (2014)

by Peter Stark(Favorite Author)
3.91 of 5 Votes: 1
0062218298 (ISBN13: 9780062218292)
review 1: Incredible story of what's today a largely forgotten chapter in early American history. Peter Stark's book explores the ambitious endeavor conceived of by John Jacob Astor to construct a global fur-trading monopoly including an American colony at the mouth of the Columbia River. A number of dynamic personalities took charge of the expedition, including the domineering Captain Thorn and the accommodating Wilson Price Hunt, which include both an oceanic and overland expedition. The story is filled with great heroics, tragedy, and conflict as Astor's crews struggle to first reach the Pacific, and then battle nature and each other to establish the colony. In many ways this book reminded me of histories written by Candace Millard- flowing fast read with vivid details. This is t... morehe kind of book that as you read will make you ask "why isn't this already a movie?"
review 2: I read this just before reading In the Kingdom of Ice, and they were a good pair. Peter Stark is not as well known as Hampton Sides, but his writing is just as detailed, well-researched and exciting in describing a different sort of expeditionary failure, like the Arctic exploration described by Sides, one that most Americans were aware of at the time but which has fallen into historical oblivion because of its failure. Astor was seeking to dominate the Pacific Northwest and sent a sea journey around Cape Horn, as well as the next major overland expedition following Louis and Clark. Nothing went quite right and the story just makes a great read. less
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Interesting history of our country and specifically my home state
Well written and insightful.
This one is at Costco.
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