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14 Works 1,309 Members 54 Reviews

Om forfatteren

Andro Linklate was born in Edinburgh, Scotland on December 10, 1944. He was the youngest child of the novelist Eric Linklater. He attended Belhaven Hill school in Dunbar, East Lothian, and then Winchester College, before studying modern history at New College, Oxford. He taught at a London vis mere comprehensive school until he was asked to complete the history of the Black Watch regiment that his father had been writing at the time of his death in 1974. It was published three years later and was well received. His other works include Amazing Maisie and the Cold Porridge Brigade, Wild People, The Code of Love, Measuring America, The Fabric of America, An Artist in Treason, Why Spencer Perceval Had to Die, and Owning the Earth. He died from a heart attack on November 3, 2013 at the age of 68. (Bowker Author Biography) vis mindre

Omfatter også følgende navne: sndro Linklstr, Linklater Andro

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More of a history of the times than an explanation of how borders and boundaries were determined.
This is the kind of book that should have plenty of maps but there were only a couple and they were pretty much unreadable.
The writing is good and it flows well, though there is some timeline back and forth that can be confusing.
Interesting but not what I was expecting based on the description.
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Rockhead515 | 4 andre anmeldelser | Jan 11, 2022 |
I found this be a pretty interesting book overall, although pretty dry unless you are really interested in the history of the American land survey and the history of the metric system. The one unfortunate thing is the fact that I read it in 2017, and near the end of the book, Linklater talks about how metric system standards were due to be implemented no later than 2010. I found myself wondering if those had actually happened on schedule. Linklater makes some excellent points about how American ideals are reflected in the democratic nature of our land survey and how it also perpetuated loneliness in the American West.… (mere)
 
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Jeff.Rosendahl | 13 andre anmeldelser | Sep 21, 2021 |
This is a book for anyone who wondered about the lines on the maps of the United States. In it Andro Linklater, a British writer and journalist, provides a history of the surveying of America. This is necessarily a two-part task, as not only does he describe the development and importance of surveying in shaping America, but it also requires him to explain the simultaneous development of uniform measurement in the Western world. For while people were familiar with units of measurement, those units themselves were not standardized, as lengths, along with weights and volume differed from place to place during the colonial period.

Yet the colonists already had access to the first standard measurement, the 22-foot-long chain introduced by the 17th century mathematician Edmund Gunter. His chain was the first element of precision that made the surveying – and through that, the selling – of the vast American territories England claimed in North America. Linklater describes this tandem development well, conveying both the importance of surveying and measurement in shaping the history of the country, as well as the numerous frustrations involved in getting it right. What began as an often haphazard assessment gradually became a more professional, systematic approach by the mid-19th century, creating the checkerboard pattern and straight lines visible from the skies overhead today.

Linklater’s book is a readable history of a mundane yet critical aspect of American history. With a scope spanning from Tudor England to a land office in modern-day Sacramento he conveys something of the long process of development that brought us to where we are now. Yet his examination of surveying rests in a bed of outdated interpretations about American history. These are minor and do little to effect the author’s argument, yet they are a weakness that diminishes from the overall value of the book. All of this makes Linklater’s book a useful look at a long overlooked element shaping American history, yet one that is strongest when focusing on its main subject and not when discussing American history more broadly.
… (mere)
 
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MacDad | 13 andre anmeldelser | Mar 27, 2020 |
Great book, especially if you're heavily involved in maps and areas anywhere. A twin tale of the physical and political challenges that went into making American land 'ownable', and the need for and rise of the metric system (or not) in Europe and the States - and the power-grab associated with it.
 
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6loss | 13 andre anmeldelser | Nov 7, 2019 |

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14
Medlemmer
1,309
Popularitet
#19,619
Vurdering
3.8
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54
ISBN
61
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