Sandstone Wonderland: The History of Utah’s National Parks and Monuments

Presented by: Fredrick Swanson

Science & Land



Author and historian Frederick Swanson will delve into the human stories behind the creation of Utah’s national parks and national monuments, showing how geologic marvels such as Rainbow Bridge, Zion, Bryce Canyon, Arches and Grand Staircase-Escalante emerged from obscurity to become worldwide travel destinations. We’ll meet a diverse and intriguing group of explorers, scientists, artists and writers who brought these masterpieces of sculptured rock to the attention of the outside world and called for their protection as part of our national park system. Come along as we ride through unknown canyons, scale lofty mesas and motor down dusty roads to discover what these early-day travelers encountered in the mysterious landscapes of the Colorado Plateau.

Frederick H. Swanson is author and editor of five books on western U.S. history, including Dave Rust: A Life in the Canyons, which received the 2008 Utah Book Award. He is a fellow of the International League of Conservation Writers and recipient of the Wallace Stegner Prize in Environmental Humanities.
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