The Great Understander

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Thom
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The Great Understander

Post by Thom » Tue Mar 28, 2006 7:49 pm

Something brought this book into mind. I've read it, anyone else?

I have surfed some abebooks-type websites and can't believe they are getting the money they are for this work of a "true-life story" It is entertaining at least

Cut and paste:

http://www.alibris.com/search/search.cf ... sspBobWd1w

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Dezdan
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Post by Dezdan » Tue Mar 28, 2006 8:10 pm

Somewhere on this board there is a thread on this very book. I put off buying this book until very recently and just today received it in the mail. The Eschatology Foundation under the William W. Walter Trust sells brand new copies of this book for $20.

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Post by ahamacav » Tue Mar 28, 2006 8:17 pm

Dezdan wrote:Somewhere on this board there is a thread on this very book. I put off buying this book until very recently and just today received it in the mail. The Eschatology Foundation under the William W. Walter Trust sells brand new copies of this book for $20.
But the old ones smell neat.
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Post by ccv » Wed Mar 29, 2006 10:00 am

Well, now I need to get a copy of that to see how far off Oliver of Darwin and the Mollie Maguires is from the truth :wink:
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Bill Gossett aka WildBill
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The Great Understander

Post by Bill Gossett aka WildBill » Wed Mar 29, 2006 9:09 pm

Thom-

The first time I read this book was 30+ years ago and just like you I really blew it off as total fiction. Years later I purchased the book and have discovered several things that I scoffed at have turned out to be true such as the shootout in Darwin and the incident where the miner was snuck out of town through the mountain. Anyway, a lot of it is probably exaggerated but it's still good reading. If you're like me and you're looking for a really good one with the facts, one of the top books out there is "Deep Enough" by Frank Crampton. Crampton was all over the place in the west. It's extremely good reading.

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Post by ChinaLakeKid » Thu Mar 30, 2006 2:57 pm

I'll second Will Bill's recommendation - Crampton's book Deep Enough:A Working Stiff in the Western Mine Camps is excellent. Also very very good are The Making of a Hardrock Miner by Stephen Voynick and Odyssey of a Desert Prospector by Herman Albert.
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Post by Lewis » Thu Mar 30, 2006 11:25 pm

The book "Darwin" by Robert P. Palazzo has a chapter in the back of the book about the book "Great Understander".

He states that a lot of what was thought to be fiction in the book "Great Understander" can actually be documented elsewhere as having actually occured!

The names in the book are also real, with some misspellings that may have happend when Walter Williams transcribed the diary.

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Post by ccv » Fri Mar 31, 2006 10:04 am

I haven't checked it yet, but it sure looks like tmy historical fiction, Oliver of Darwin - uses Pallazios book for a reference. He doesn't list any references, of course, but at one point he has a whole list of names at a meeting & what places of business they own, that I would be willing to bet our taken from Palazzio's census pages.
Cecile
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www.explorehistoricalif.com

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Post by Thom » Fri Mar 31, 2006 12:07 pm

Lewis wrote:The book "Darwin" by Robert P. Palazzo has a chapter in the back of the book about the book "Great Understander".

He states that a lot of what was thought to be fiction in the book "Great Understander" can actually be documented elsewhere as having actually occured!

The names in the book are also real, with some misspellings that may have happend when Walter Williams transcribed the diary.

~Lewis
I think it can be shown that place and people names all exsited, but the majority is at a minimum highly exaggerated.

I mean, the Echatology Foundation is metaphysical, I gather, but the frontispiece on the book shows the guy in a fez with Islam printed on it.

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Post by ahamacav » Fri Mar 31, 2006 3:32 pm

Thom wrote:... but the majority is at a minimum highly exaggerated.

I mean, the Echatology Foundation is metaphysical, I gather, but the frontispiece on the book shows the guy in a fez with Islam printed on it.
So far I've read up to where Oliver arrives in Darwin. Seems to be some pretty sad memories so far. I have some of the books that Palazzo references (Edwards, Chalfant) to compare to reports of the same events. Want to see if some of it jives with other characters (Vasquez, 'Featherlegs') Waiting for the historical fiction to arrive to watch the trail.
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Post by AndyR » Sat Apr 01, 2006 10:02 am

Just started reading The Great Understander last night..... :-D

He's just run away....

Andy

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Post by Thom » Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:16 pm

Ordered my own copy of the book from the mentioned website last Friday. In the mail box on Monday--dang!

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Post by ccv » Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:45 pm

Well, I spent the money I could have used on books on ankle & wrist weights to up my tae bo work-out a notch or two, darn it! So I'll have to wait a couple of paychecks before ordering.

By the way, Nancy Williams/Featherlegs is buried in the Darwin cemetery. Both Robin & I paid tribute to her there a couple of years ago.
Cecile
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Well behaved women rarely make history-
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Could have been a salesman...

Post by Rockslide » Sun Apr 09, 2006 7:09 pm

I can't recall who was responsible for bringing up "The Great Understander," but I bought a copy too. Just finished "Deep Enough" a couple of nights ago...excellent read for someone with my interests. Could have used the services of a miner (AKA "stiff", right?) to interpret some of the words and phrases, but I guessed at them and probably did OK. Right now I'm half way through "Shadow Divers," then "The Great Understander" is next in line.

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Post by ETAV8R » Fri Jul 03, 2015 4:53 pm

Reviving this thread because these all seem like worthwhile titles to add to my Death Valley library.

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