Footprints Across the South: Bartram's Trail Revisited

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Kautz, James
Kennesaw State University Press
Bartram; South; Travel; History; United States History
article description
Over the past three decades, a tireless group of volunteers, funded by donations and small grants, has laid out the “Bartram Trail.” Drawn on maps, marked by metal signs beside highways and city streets and by blazes on trees, the trail follows the overall pathway of the eighteenth-century naturalist. Francis Harper’s edition of Bartram’s Travels led the way, identifying most of Bartram’s sites and species. More recently, Brad Sanders has given detailed directions to Bartram’s locations and present-day sites along the trail. Charles D. Spornick, Alan R. Cattier, and Robert J. Greene have published a guide for outdoor enthusiasts and history buffs that follows Bartram’s path. Others have documented the plants and animals that Bartram identified. The professional and avocational botanists are more qualified than I to discuss the whereabouts of these species and to describe them in modern science’s terms.This book is a view of the early twenty-first-century landscapes along Bartram’s trail. I have met the people who live there, seen and smelled the industries that have sunk their steel and concrete roots into the soil of his venues. This is the story of the America that grew around the Bartram Trail.