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eBook Caleb Catlum's America download

by Vincent McHugh

eBook Caleb Catlum's America download ISBN: 0810337177
Author: Vincent McHugh
Publisher: Gale / Cengage Learning (June 1, 1971)
Language: English
ePub: 1769 kb
Fb2: 1851 kb
Rating: 4.5
Other formats: mbr lit lrf txt
Category: Different

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Home Browse Books Book details, Caleb Catlum's America: The Enlivening Wonders o. .Caleb Catlum's America: The Enlivening Wonders of His Adventures, Voyages, Discoveries, Loves, Hoaxes, Bombast and Rigmaroles in All Parts of America, from His Birth in 1798 Almost to the Present Year, Told by Himself. By. Get weekly book recommendations

Caleb catlum's america. But told as autobiography - biography - what you will. Entertaining, in not too large doses. But not an easy book to place. Publisher: Stackpole.

full book description) Stackpole Sons, New York, NY, 1936. Ask Seller a Question. Bibliographic Details. Title: Caleb Catlum's America. Publisher: Stackpole Sons, New York, NY. Publication Date: 1936. Illustrator: Illustrations. Book Condition: Very Good.

View on timesmachine. This is a digitized version of an article from The Times’s print archive, before the start of online publication in 1996. Occasionally the digitization process introduces transcription errors or other problems

Dead Fads, (ss) Readercon 24 Souvenir Book, e. Caleb Catlum’s America, (ex) 1937. Books in Brief Feb 1937.

Dead Fads, (ss) Readercon 24 Souvenir Book, ed. Richard Duffy & Ellen Brody, Readercon 2013. A Crowd of Ships, (ss) Argosy Sep 1951. Author: McHugh, Vincent, 1904-1983. Illustrator: Hartmann, Georg . 1911-1989.

SFE : Science Fiction Encyclopedia : (1904-1983) US author whose comic saga Caleb Catlum's America . born Providence, Rhode Island: 23 December 1904. died Sacramento, California: 23 January 1983.

SFE : Science Fiction Encyclopedia : (1904-1983) US author whose comic saga Caleb Catlum's America (1936) is about a family of immortals (see Immortality) who amusingly represent the high points of US history.

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Comments: (2)
Impala Frozen
Written in 1936, this work seems to have subsided into obscurity. There is no electronic edition that I can find, and it is out of print. You might stumble across it at your local library or used book store, or as I did, just happen to run across a reference to it somewhere and go looking for it. Robert Heinlein, according to his biographer William Patterson, was greatly impressed by it, which was enough to get me interested.

Caleb Catlum narrates the story of his life from the early republic until modern (well, 1930s) times. Only a couple of inches tall when born, with seals and geese for brothers and sisters, and gargantuan tree-topping parents, he rapidly grows into a seven foot tall young man. He is a brawler with a heart of gold, a backwoods yokel widely read in all fields of science and scholarship, a sharp trader of great generosity, and a great lover and leaver of women. He always tells them that when the time is ripe for his return, wild horses couldn't keep him away.

His clan is the Catlums of Catlumville, a race of immortals descended from Eric the Red Catlum. Catlumville itself is not a fixed place but is constantly moving, along with the restless Catlums themselves. Caleb is always on the move, traveling throughout America and the world, along the way encountering Thomas Jefferson, John Henry, Mike Fink, Lewis and Clark, Abe Lincoln, Davey Crockett, Calamity Jane...a complete list is pointless. He is not just traveling through the land, but is meeting the personalities, real and imagined, who help define this country for so many of us. The spirit of the tall tale permeates everything, whether he is racing along the great plains on a giant hybrid jackrabbit, taking a shortcut with a river steamboat across dry land, or with a little help from his friends, using great skyhooks to drag the temperate zone back where it belongs.

The pioneer Catlums are alway encountering their nemeses, "the Traders". Where a Catlum will make a fortune and give it away, a Trader will seek to accumulate more and more. The Catlums want to live, the Traders want to control. As the frontier moves, the Catlums take Catlumville with it, but what will happen when there is no frontier? Can the Catlums adapt to a society run by Traders, and should they want to?

There is also a rather ambiguous character, Isaac the World Changer, who I'm not sure what to make of, and it's possible that the author didn't either. He seems to represent different forces in human society, but just what they are is debatable.

The word "patriotic" gets twisted around different ways, and has different connotations depending on your world view. Let's say, then, that this is a book which is deeply proud of America, which loves American folklore, and loves a particular idea of what America was, is, and should be. There is, I think, a political slant, but using the terms of the early 21st century to describe the attitudes of the mid 1930s is tricky, and may leave the wrong impression. Suffice it to say that this is an idea book as well as a rowdy sequence of tall tales. Inevitably, much of it is dated, but there is still much that is fresh and relevant to any age. I can see why this book would have appealed to Heinlein, with his love of liberty and assertive individuality. You don't need to be familiar with Heinlein's work to appreciate Caleb Catlum, but if you are, you'll realize that Lazarus Long and the Howard families were not entirely an original creation. This review is not the first to make such a connection, see, for example, Patterson's book referenced above.

So why isn't Vincent McHugh's work better known today? I honestly don't know. Perhaps it's simply that not every worthy book can survive, even if it finds an audience in its own time. It deserved a better fate, but books, like people, doesn't always get what they deserve. Perhaps it will be rediscovered, and somebody will re-issue it in paperback or as an Ebook. In the meantime, there are still copies out there.
This is a hard book to summarize. Take all the tall tales of American folklore, blend in a genuine love of American history and a thorough understanding of warts-and-all human nature, season with oversized portions of humor and joie de vivre. Just don't expect a coherent novel - though framed as such, this book is most easily read as a collection of interrelated discrete anecdotes, a chapter or two at a time.

Well worth taking the time to find a copy. It's a great pity this isn't available in a modern edition or as an ebook.