The Johnstown Flood
  • The Johnstown Flood
  • The Johnstown Flood
ISBN: 0844662925
EAN13: 9780844662923
Language: English
Pages: 0
Dimensions: 1" H x 8.9" L x 5.8" W
Weight: 1.1 lbs.
Format: Hardcover
Select Format Format: Hardcover Select Conditions Condition: Good


Format: Hardcover

Condition: Good

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Book Overview

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The stunning story of one of America's great disasters, a preventable tragedy of Gilded Age America, brilliantly told by master historian David McCullough.

At the end of the nineteenth century, Johnstown, Pennsylvania, was a booming coal-and-steel town filled with hardworking families striving for a piece of the nation's burgeoning industrial prosperity. In the mountains above Johnstown, an old earth dam had been hastily rebuilt to create a lake for an exclusive summer resort patronized by the tycoons of that same industrial prosperity, among them Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and Andrew Mellon. Despite repeated warnings of possible danger, nothing was done about the dam. Then came May 31, 1889, when the dam burst, sending a wall of water thundering down the mountain, smashing through Johnstown, and killing more than 2,000 people. It was a tragedy that became a national scandal.

Graced by David McCullough's remarkable gift for writing richly textured, sympathetic social history, The Johnstown Flood is an absorbing, classic portrait of life in nineteenth-century America, of overweening confidence, of energy, and of tragedy. It also offers a powerful historical lesson for our century and all times: the danger of assuming that because people are in positions of responsibility they are necessarily behaving responsibly.

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Book Reviews (14)

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   Great history lesson on why the flood of 1889 killed so many people
It is managed by the U.S. Park Service and is simply one of the best bargains around. Great Memorial with a knock's socks off video re-recreation of the flood of 1889. I wanted to find out even more about the flood, so I read this book. David McCullough is one of the top writers in America and does an excellent job of presenting the history of the dam, laying out events as they happened. If you are interested in this subject at all, read the book. You won 't be disappointed.
   Excellent Book
I am from Somerset, near Johnstown, and I can remember my father and my uncles coming from Johnstown to Johnstown after the flood in 1977. I never knew much about the floods of 1936 or 1889... except that the flood of 1889 was horrendous. I became a fan of David McCullough's voice in several historical documentaries years ago, and then read his book in 1776 and fell in love with his writing style - very descriptive in a way that paints a picture of the scene he is describing. This was a book that I found on Amazon. I borrowed it first from the high school and then decided it is a must-have for my bookshelf, as it is history about a place where many of my local friends live now.
Rarely has a book affected me in the way that this one did. The flood was so vividly described that I could see the great wave that came in my sleep night after night! Mc Cullough is a master at retelling history, as if he had witnessed it himself. His research touches every fact and fiction and he puts it all together in such a readable form.
   Never under estimate the power of people
Very good read Such a shame that all those lives were lost, businesses, houses, churches. The survivors pulled together got the strength to rebuild a town that really did not exist.
   Old but still the best
Though written in the 1960s, this is still the best book on the subject. It is written in a narrative style so that it is easy to read and follow the events.
   A Story of Tragedy and Survival
This is the book that launched McCullough's career as one of our leading historians. It is a tragic story and remains one of the worst disasters in U.S. history over a century later. To read their story, the Johnstown flood does not seem so distant. That is what good narrative history does. It connects us to our past and brings it forward to the present. We can still learn from the flood, the neglect of the dam by the elite. The hardworking citizens trying to scratch a living in a country booming full-speed ahead. and how the people rebuilt and moved forward in all that death and destruction. Even now, the terror is hard to imagine, but equally hard to forget that many of the dead have never been identified, and some are never found. And sadly, no one was held responsible for all these lost lives.
   The Johnstown Flood is a great read! Very well written account of this horrific event!
This book was a Christmas present to my son. On January 4, I received a text from him, thanking him again for giving him the Johnstown flood. He said that he finished it a few days before his text was written and it was a great read! , ''
   Could have been prevented
The detail is amazing. '' One of my favorite books is McCullough's. I can not believe the devastation that took place and how the elite cared about themselves only. Just sad ''.
   Wonder if the book I bought is a counterfeit...
When you buy a book written by David McCullough and published by Simon Schuster, you expect a high book even in paperback form. This isn 't one. I have not yet read it, and I will, but already I notice that the face of the paper seems less than professional, the photos are barely recognizable as images, and the captions are too large for the page, so that words run togethertosavespace. The captions on a page are a different size than the captions on another. I read McCullough's '' John Adams '' in paperback and was spellbound by the work, and the quality of the printing was great, because the quality of this printed book is terrible.
   This could be a movie!
This is horrifying and almost cinematic in its description of this fascinating event. If you haven 't yet read McCullough, this is a good one to start with. It is not too long and easy to read. I couldn t put it down!