In 1969, Henry Catto was selling insurance in San Antonio, Texas. Just twenty years later, he presented his credentials as ambassador to the Court of St. James's to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, at Buckingham Palace. In this engaging memoir, he retraces his journey from Texas outsider to Washington insider, providing a fascinating look at the glamour, day-to-day work, and even occasional danger that come with being a high-level representative of the United States government.
Catto's posts brought him into contact with the world's most powerful leaders and left him with a wealth of stories, which he recounts amusingly in these pages. He was the official host for Queen Elizabeth's visit to America during the Bicentennial year—and one of José Napoleon Duarte's protectors after his failed 1972 coup attempt in El Salvador. Catto accompanied Richard Nixon on his historic trip to Russia, sparred with Bill Moyers and the producers of "60 Minutes" as Caspar Weinberger's spokesman at the Pentagon, and hosted George Bush's planning meeting with Margaret Thatcher at the beginning of the Persian Gulf War. In telling these and other stories, he offers behind-the-scenes glimpses into how political power really works in Washington, London, and other world capitals.
High In Utah
Michael Weibel University of Utah Press, 1999 Library of Congress GV199.42.U8W45 1999 | Dewey Decimal 917.920433
If you measured the highest point in each county, which of the fifty states would have the highest average elevation? You probably didn’t say Utah, but in fact the average elevation of the state’s county high points is approximately 11,222 feet (Colorado is second at 10,971 feet). Most but not all of Utah’s high peaks grow out of a series of mountain ranges that form a backbone from north to south through the middle of the state. Surprisingly, most can also be climbed in a day, and during the warm months climbing gear may be unnecessary. Some summits are even attainable by car.
High in Utah is quite consciously a book for peak baggers, complete with a checklist and elevations. Summits range from Kings Peak, Utah’s highest at 13,528’ to the unnamed peak in Rich County, a mere 9,255’. In addition to the county high points, this book also has four “classic” climbs: Mt. Olympus in Salt Lake County; Mt. Timpanogos above Provo; Notch Peak in the House Range west of Delta; and Wellsville Cone, Cache Valley’s western landmark.
Since finding a place to start can often be the most frustrating part of a hike, emphasis is placed on directions to each trailhead. There is a road map for each hike, as well as a trail map showing contours. The routes in this guide are not always the easiest or most practical, but they may be the most appealing and are often the most commonly used (lessening human impact on other potential routes). Difficulty levels range from 'extreme'—long, steep routes that may require some route finding—to 'too easy'—reachable by car. Two sets of hiking times are provided to accommodate variations in hiking speed, and there are also sections on flora and fauna, mountain weather, low-impact hiking and camping, equipment, and altitude sickness.
"Alaska is our biggest, buggiest, boggiest state. Texas remains our largest unfrozen state. But mountainous Utah, if ironed out flat, would take up more space on a map than either."
—Edward Abbey, 1927–1989
High, Wide, and Frightened
Louise Thaden University of Arkansas Press, 2004 Library of Congress TL540.T48A3 2004 | Dewey Decimal 629.13092
Louise Thaden wrote High, Wide, and Frightened in the prime of her life, making this autobiography unique among books about the Golden Age of Aviation. Thaden, a contemporary of pioneering women pilots Amelia Earhart, Ruth Elder, Florence Klingensmith, and Ruth Nichols, was part of a small group of determined women who overcame discrimination and obstacles to become pilots in a time when air races and distance, altitude and endurance records were daily news in America. She became the first woman to win the Bendix Transcontinental Air Race, the premier air race of the day and, before her, a male-dominated one.
High, Wide, and Frightened is the story of Thaden’s life, of her achievements in aviation, and also of her childhood in Arkansas. She writes about her everyday personal life and her day-today experiences in aviation.
Authority and priesthood were concepts that developed gradually in Mormon theology, not as thunderbolts but as ideas that acquired meaning and momentum over time. Acting initially on the basis of implied leadership, Joseph Smith moved toward explicit angelic authority and an increasingly defined structure drawn from biblical models.
All the while the structure of higher and lower priesthoods fluctuated in response to pragmatic needs. Priests were needed to perform ordinances, teachers to lead congregations, bishops to manage church assets, and elders to proselytize–responsibilities which would be redistributed repeatedly throughout Smith’s fourteen-year ministry.
Gregory Prince charts these developments with impressive interpretative skill. Besides the obvious historical significance, he underscores the implications for current Mormon governance. For instance, where innovations have characterized the past, one need not be bound by custom or surprised when church leaders instigate change.