New Nonfiction Release Examines History of Commercial Canning in the Lower Arkansas Valley and the Western Slope; Book by Lee Scamehorn

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This new nonfiction release from Dog Ear Publishing is the second installment of Lee Scamehorn’s in-depth exploration of the commercial food canning and preservation industry throughout Colorado, with a focus on the industry’s impact on the Arkansas Valley and Western Slope.

Dog Ear Publishing releases “Colorado’s Small Town Industrial Revolution: The Arkansas Valley and the Western Slope” by Lee Scamehorn.

a fascinating look at a nearly defunct industry that kept the economy of a great state afloat for the better part of a century.”

(PRWEB) November 07, 2012 -- Nineteenth century Colorado experienced a boom generated by the mining of precious metals, such as gold, silver, lead and copper; once the production of these metals diminished, the industries that were linked to agriculture began to loom larger in the landscape of the state’s economy. In fact, as this new book details, the agricultural boom in the late 19th and early 20th century managed to offset the income loss when the mines were no longer as profitable. While the boom eventually leveled out, the commercial canning and preservation industry continued to be profitable for more than one hundred years in the South Platte River Basin as well as the lower Arkansas River Valley and the valley of the Colorado River and its tributaries. The businesses in this area were not the giants found in other parts of Colorado, but these rural processors managed to maintain their businesses even as the majority of the big players closed their doors.

The lower Arkansas Valley and the Western Slope are geographically separate, but similar in that they both feature rivers that can irrigate a usually semi-arid climate. Both areas experienced similar difficulties in settlement, as the native populace was reluctant to relocate and relinquish their land to the settlers who desired to build railroads and create centers of commerce in the untamed landscape. Food processors became key to local and regional prosperity in the early 20th century, continuing well into the 1970s. Many of these local processors were eventually absorbed by such canning moguls as Libby, McNeill and Libby Company, or Western Food Products, Inc, all of which settled in the vicinity for a number of decades. The small organizations were fronted by local businessmen, colorful figures who played a pivotal part in building the history of the state of Colorado.

Colorado’s Small Town Industrial Revolution: The Arkansas Valley and the Western Slope is a fascinating look at a nearly defunct industry that kept the economy of a great state afloat for the better part of a century. Author Lee Scamehorn, professor emeritus of history at the University of Colorado, Boulder, has spent a great deal of time and energy researching the topic of Colorado’s Industrial Revolution, for this book as well as the first volume in the series, which focused on Northeastern Colorado’s industry. Scamehorn has written a number of books about the rich history of Colorado, including such titles as High Altitude Energy: The History of Fossil Fuels in Colorado and Mill & Mine: The CF&I in the Twentieth Century.
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For additional information, please visit http://www.HISTORICALCOLORADOBOOKS.com.

Colorado’s Small Town Industrial Revolution: The Arkansas Valley and the Western Slope
Lee Scamehorn
Dog Ear Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-4575-1265-0        224 pages                 $14.95 US

Available at Ingram, Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble and fine bookstores everywhere.

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