A dramatic comparison of federal land ownership in the West versus other regions.
The Atlantic magazine recently published a piece about the West entitledThe Graying of Rural America, which argues that, “As cities attract young people, rural America has become older, whiter, and less populated.”
The authors focus on Fossil, Oregon, the county seat of Wheeler County, which they describe as slowly dying. According to The Atlantic, the town began “bleeding jobs” after a lumber mill closed in 1978. Young people leave for educations and jobs in larger cities, and old people become trapped. They exist mostly on investment earnings or government checks like Social Security.Continue reading →
Otto and Uli are visiting for a week. We hosted one of their sons as a high-school exchange student about thirty years ago, and we’ve been friends ever since. Years ago we hiked with them in the Alps, and now they wanted to hike in the Appalachians. The Appalachians have vast areas of unpopulated wilderness with poorly marked trails, and hikers who make a small mistake may walk for miles in a wrong direction.
Mention the Cumberland Gap and many people immediately think of Daniel Boone who blazed the Wilderness Trail through the gap. European-American settlers then migrated along the trail into what is now Kentucky and Tennessee, but Native Americans traveled through the … Continue reading →