Transforming the Appalachian Countryside: Railroads, Deforestation, and Social Change in West Virginia, 1880-1920

By Ronald L. Lewis | Go to book overview

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Authors of scholarly books publish their work only with the assistance of a multitude of generous people, and I am no exception.

I have incurred my greatest debts at West Virginia University, where I have been fortunate to receive support from all levels of the institution. A sabbatical leave allowed me the time to write much of the first draft of this manuscript. An Eberly Family Professorship provides me with funds to support my research activities, and I am indebted to the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, particularly the former dean and current provost Gerald Lang, for making these resources available to me.

The Regional Research Institute at West Virginia University provided me with a forum for presenting my ideas before colleagues from several disciplines at seminars and workshops. As a faculty associate in the institute and member of institute delegations to joint seminars abroad, I have presented sections of this book at the University of Glasgow in Scotland and at the Institute of Industrial Economics in Ukraine. I also presented a paper drawn from this research at a Southern Regional Science Association meeting in San Antonio and at several local conferences and symposia sponsored by the Regional Research Institute. For three years the institute greatly facilitated the completion of this work by funding a graduate research assistant to gather, collate, and tabulate census data and to plow through mounds of state government documents. I wish to acknowledge my gratitude to Andrew Isserman, until recently the director of the institute, and staff members Mary Lou Myer and Carla Uphold for their assistance over the years.

Several scholars commented on portions of this book in manuscript, and I would like to thank them for taking time from busy schedules to provide this professional courtesy. Altina Waller of the University of Connecticut critiqued a paper I presented at a Southern Historical Association meeting, and John A. Williams of Appalachian State University commented on another paper presented at an annual Appalachian Studies Association conference. Both are excellent critics, and I have taken their advice. The environment chapter was read by colleagues in the West Virginia University Division of Forestry, Stephen Hollenhorst and Cedric Landenberger. On

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