Sunday, July 11, 2010

Book Review - Cape Cod National Seashore: The First 50 Years

Although it may seem to be a long time for some, 50 years is a short time in the life of a national park. The Cape Cod National Seashore has it's 50th birthday next year, on August 7, 2011. The National Seashore was born in 1961 with John F. Kennedy's signature. There is a new book, available starting tomorrow, that captures the first 50 years on the Seashore in images. The book is aptly titled "Cape Cod National Seashore: The First 50 Years" by Daniel Lombardo and published by Arcadia Publishing.

This book starts with the creation of the Cape with the receding of the ice sheet marking the end of the ice age, but quickly jumps to the 1800s and 1900s as it chronicles such happenings as the many shipwrecks, building of the lighthouses, Henry Beston's Outermost House, and Marconi's wireless station, just to name a few. The development of the Seashore, from concept to completion, is shown with a number of photos of local and national politicians visiting the Outer Cape to see for themselves what a treasure they could preserve for future visitors.

It's difficult in any review to capture the fullness of a historical perspective. It becomes even more difficult when the book is comprised of so many historical photos. I especially enjoyed the early photos of the Seashore, with the early signage, the cars on the beaches, the movement of lighthouses and life saving stations, and of the people enjoying the water and sunshine on the beaches.

The Cape Cod National Seashore is certainly a gift given to the present by the some wise souls of the past. This book, with its many pictures and commentary, shows us that it was no easy task to create the Seashore, but its creation preserves a rich past for our present-day enjoyment. Get this book and see for yourself. It's a light read, lots of fun.

This book is available from local retailers, online bookstores, or through Arcadia Publishing on their website. This book is priced at $21.99.

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