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In the fifty years since its inception in 1961, the Bison Books imprint at the University of Nebraska Press has published some of the best historical, literary, and original western literature. The Golden West celebrates that continuing mission, bringing together some of the most beloved and iconic stories of the American West. Here, readers will find the classic West: from the adventures of the Corps of Discovery to the trials of the Oregon Trail, from the diverse landscapes of the Great Plains to the rugged Rocky Mountains and the Willamette Valley, from traditional Sioux culture to Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, and from the cowboys, ranchers, farmers, and mountaineers who often make up our western mythology to their American Indian counterpoints in stories about tribal society, monumental battles, and interaction with white settlers. The Golden West holds something for every reader – fiction, poetry, memoir, folklore, firsthand accounts, and all the shades of gray in between.
Alicia Christensen is the Bison Books editor at the University of Nebraska Press and the editor of American Lives: A Reader (available in a Bison Books edition). David Wrobel is a professor and chair of the Department of History at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He is the author of Promised Lands: Promotion, Memory, and the Creation of the American West.
" A worthy compilation of a range of Great Plains and Western topics, The Golden West is the latest in the important contributions the University of Nebraska Press continues to make to our understanding of this region and its people."
- Omaha World Herald
“The Golden West contains wonderful selections, provocatively arranged. Reading, I felt the pleasure of encountering old friends but also a stab of envy for the young readers who will travel these realms of gold for the first time.”
- Mary Clearman Blew, author of Jackalope Dreams, winner of the Western Heritage Center’s prize for fiction
“In this fine collection, the American West is defined by war, optimism, adventure, despair, discovery, innovation, hopelessness, and prosperity. This is the American West as it really was – sometimes rough and wild, other times serene and domesticated – told through the beautiful language of authors who wrote what they lived, and whose lives were shaped, as all our lives are, by the place they called home.”
- Ted Kooser, U.S. Poet Laureate (2004–06) and Pulitzer Prize-winning author
"This is an important book with some of the best Bison Books has to offer."
- James W. Durney