The physical environment – the biological world, the weather, the presence or absence of resources – plays an important role in nearly every event in history. The American Environment is based on the belief that it is vitally important to examine the ways in which the United States has dealt with the natural bounty bestowed upon it and to look at the pivotal events of American history through the lens of the environment.
Chronologically arranged according to the historical eras outlined in the National Standards for United States History, chapters cover American history from Native America through the arrival of Europeans to the present. Informative entries on people and events are combined with significant primary sources to provide an overview of specifically environmental topics, as well as many that are not, at first glance, environment-related. In so doing, The American Environment creates fodder for student research and demonstrates the important role the natural world has played in the story of America.