Astoria: Astor and Jefferson's Lost Pacific Empire: A Tale of Ambition and Survival on the Early American Frontier

Astoria: Astor and Jefferson's Lost Pacific Empire: A Tale of Ambition and Survival on the Early American Frontier

by Peter Stark

Paperback

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Overview

In the tradition of The Lost City of Z and Skeletons in the Zahara, Astoria is the thrilling, true-adventure tale of the 1810 Astor Expedition, an epic, now forgotten, three-year journey to forge an American empire on the Pacific Coast. Peter Stark offers a harrowing saga in which a band of explorers battled nature, starvation, and madness to establish the first American settlement in the Pacific Northwest and opened up what would become the Oregon trail, permanently altering the nation's landscape and its global standing.

Six years after Lewis and Clark's began their journey to the Pacific Northwest, two of the Eastern establishment's leading figures, John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson, turned their sights to founding a colony akin to Jamestown on the West Coast and transforming the nation into a Pacific trading power. Author and correspondent for Outside magazine Peter Stark recreates this pivotal moment in American history for the first time for modern readers, drawing on original source material to tell the amazing true story of the Astor Expedition.

Unfolding over the course of three years, from 1810 to 1813, Astoria is a tale of high adventure and incredible hardship in the wilderness and at sea. Of the more than one hundred-forty members of the two advance parties that reached the West Coast—one crossing the Rockies, the other rounding Cape Horn—nearly half perished by violence. Others went mad. Within one year, the expedition successfully established Fort Astoria, a trading post on the Columbia River. Though the colony would be short-lived, it opened provincial American eyes to the potential of the Western coast and its founders helped blaze the Oregon Trail.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062218308
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/10/2015
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 91,490
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.80(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Peter Stark is a historian and adventure writer. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller Astoria, along with The Last Empty Spaces, Last Breath, and At the Mercy of the River. He is a correspondent for Outside magazine, has written for Smithsonian and The New Yorker, and is a National Magazine Award nominee. He lives in Montana with his wife and children.

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Astoria: John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson's Lost Pacific Empire: A Story of Wealth, Ambition, and Survival 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
Drouillard More than 1 year ago
Being an avid reader of this era's history of the American West, I really enjoyed reading a new take on the trials and tribulations of the Astorians. Much detail, but not too much, revealing what really went into the unraveling of John Jacob Astor's "Grand Plan."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent book! Very well written and laid out. Couldn't put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story is too real to not be real - but you keep reading and it just gets more unbelievable! What we did to go to the moon, as explorers, was obviously epic, yet what Stark points out here is sometimes our greatest explorations have happened right here on Earth. You don't have to be a part of the Pacific Northwest to enjoy this fantastic read. You like historic action reads you'll like this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fascinating history of the establishment of Astoria. Well written story of early adventurers and the struggles they encountered as they crossed the unknown western regions of the US to establish world commerce. Excellent profiles of the people who made this trek and how the personalities interacted. I was particularly impressed with the courage and determination of the men...and one woman...who suffered great hardships to realize the vision of John Jacob Astor. Held my interest throughout.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the story of the incredible hardships that the men of this journey endured whether by sea or overland. It also shows the arrogance and stupidity of some of the leaders of this expedition. Throw in a little treason and disloyalty thrown in for good measure.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Could not wait to read the next page. Without any question in the top 5 books that I have read on any subject . A must .
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was born and raised in the Pacific NW yet never knew this remarkable story. I highly recommend this book ..
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Readers of adventure/survival history will love this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Having+spent+a+night+in+the+YMCA+in+Astoria%2C+due+to+lack+of+availabilty+in+its%27+many+motels%2C+this+book+particularly+intrigued+me.+Beside+the+fascinating+history+the+author%27s+writing+style+made+it+more+a+page+turner.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good reading..
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It's decent, but you're just reading along and then all of a sudden- epilogue.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tedious read. I lost interest in the story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A must read for history lovers. Non fiction that reads like a novel. I knew nothing of this chapter of American discovery and am happy to have expanded my knowledge. I honestly couldn't put the book down. I cannot fathom the fortitude and bravery of these men (and one woman) who trekked across this country two hundred years ago.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very interesting
Flo04 More than 1 year ago
Very interesting and insightful. Didn't really know much about Astor before reading this book. I grew up on the U.S. West Coast; I don't remember learning in school about much of what is written in the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An absolutely absorbing book that was well written about an event I knew nothing about until I read the book. I'm glad I heard about it when we were visiting Astoria, Oregon. I thoroughly enjoyed it..
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dancin with ma milkshake baby