The lost forest

Phyllis Root

Book - 2019

"The story of a forest "lost" by a surveying error--and all the flora and fauna to be found there. A forest, of course, doesn't need a map to know where to grow. But people need a map to find it. And in 1882 when surveyors set out to map a part of Minnesota, they got confused, or tired and cold (it was November), and somehow mapped a great swath of ancient trees as a lake. The Lost Forest tells the story of this lucky error and of the 144 acres of old-growth red and white pin...e it preserved." -- ONIX annotation.

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Subjects
Genres
Picture books
Informational works
Published
Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Press [2019]
Language
English
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 29 cm
Audience
Age 8.
K to grade 3.
ISBN
9780816697960
0816697965
Main Author
Phyllis Root (author)
Other Authors
Betsy Bowen (illustrator)
Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

"How do you lose a forest?/ First you need a forest to lose." So begins Root's beguiling true-life telling of how 114 acres of northern Minnesota old-growth pine forest was spared the lumberjack's saw thanks to a surveyor's error in 1882. Two narratives grow side-by-side: the story of the U.S. taking land from Native peoples to be mapped and measured, and the deeper truth that forests operate on their own timescale. At the intersection of these realities is one mismarked map that meant a lost forest, an ancient world's survival. Finely wrought plainspoken poetry ("If you have ever walked through the woods/ you know that the land doesn't care/ about straight lines") covers a lot of ground, supplemented by end notes explaining the ecology of old-growth forests and the history of surveyors. Bowen's moody, saturated illustrations of layered landscapes and historical journals add heft to the text's implicit message that the natural world is something more than a measurable commodity. Ages 4–9. (Apr.) Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

The story of a forest 'lost' by a surveying error'and all the flora and fauna to be found thereA forest, of course, doesn't need a map to know where to grow. But people need a map to find it. And in 1882 when surveyors set out to map a part of Minnesota, they got confused, or tired and cold (it was November), and somehow mapped a great swath of ancient trees as a lake. For more than seventy-five years, the mistake stayed on the map, and the forest remained safe from logging'no lumber baron expects to find timber in a lake, after all. The Lost Forest tells the story of this lucky error and of the 144 acres of old-growth red and white pine it preserved. With gentle humor, Phyllis Root introduces readers to the men at their daunting task, trekking across Minnesota, measuring and marking the vast land into townships and sections and quarters. She takes us deep into a stand of virgin pine, one of the last and largest in the state, where U.S. history and natural history meet. With the help of Betsy Bowen's finely observed and beautiful illustrations, she shows us all the life that can be found in the Lost Forest.Accompanying the story is a wealth of information about the Cadastral Survey and about the plants and animals that inhabit forests'making the book a valuable guide for readers who might want to look even deeper into the history of Minnesota, the flora and fauna of old-growth forests, and the apportioning of land in America.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

The story of a forest “lost” by a surveying error—and all the flora and fauna to be found thereA forest, of course, doesn’t need a map to know where to grow. But people need a map to find it. And in 1882 when surveyors set out to map a part of Minnesota, they got confused, or tired and cold (it was November), and somehow mapped a great swath of ancient trees as a lake. For more than seventy-five years, the mistake stayed on the map, and the forest remained safe from logging—no lumber baron expects to find timber in a lake, after all. The Lost Forest tells the story of this lucky error and of the 144 acres of old-growth red and white pine it preserved. With gentle humor, Phyllis Root introduces readers to the men at their daunting task, trekking across Minnesota, measuring and marking the vast land into townships and sections and quarters. She takes us deep into a stand of virgin pine, one of the last and largest in the state, where U.S. history and natural history meet. With the help of Betsy Bowen’s finely observed and beautiful illustrations, she shows us all the life that can be found in the Lost Forest.Accompanying the story is a wealth of information about the Cadastral Survey and about the plants and animals that inhabit forests—making the book a valuable guide for readers who might want to look even deeper into the history of Minnesota, the flora and fauna of old-growth forests, and the apportioning of land in America.