Tree-ring dating (dendrochronology) is a method of scientific dating based on the analysis of tree-ring growth patterns. As author James Speer notes, trees are remarkable bioindicators. Although there are other scientific means of dating climatic and environmental events, dendrochronology provides the most reliable of all paleorecords. Dendrochronology can be applied to very old trees to provide long-term records of past temperature, rainfall, fire, insect outbreaks, landslides, hurricanes, and ice storms--to name only a few events.
This comprehensive text addresses all of the subjects that a reader who is new to the field will need to know and will be a welcome reference for practitioners at all levels. It includes a history of the discipline, biological and ecological background, principles of the field, basic scientific information on the structure and growth of trees, the complete range of dendrochronology methods, and a full description of each of the relevant subdisciplines.
Individual chapters address the composition of wood, methods of field and laboratory study, dendroarchaeology, dendroclimatology, dendroecology, dendrogeomorphology, and dendrochemistry. The book also provides thorough introductions to common computer programs and methods of statistical analysis. In the final chapter, the author describes "frontiers in dendrochronology," with an eye toward future directions in the field. He concludes with several useful appendixes, including a listing of tree and shrub species that have been used successfully by dendrochronologists. Throughout, photographs and illustrations visually represent the state of knowledge in the field.
In the late eighteenth century, the British took greater interest than ever before in observing and recording all aspects of the natural world. Travelers and colonists returning from far-flung lands provided dazzling accounts of such exotic creatures as elephants, baboons, and kangaroos. The engraver Thomas Bewick (1753–1828) harnessed this newfound interest by assembling the most comprehensive illustrated guide to nature of his day.
A General History of Quadrupeds, first published in 1790, showcases Bewick’s groundbreaking engraving techniques that allowed text and images to be published on the same page. From anteaters to zebras, armadillos to wolverines, this delightful volume features engravings of over four hundred animals alongside descriptions of their characteristics as scientifically understood at the time. Quadrupeds reaffirms Bewick’s place in history as an incomparable illustrator, one whose influence on natural history and book printing still endures today.
Guitars inspire cult-like devotion: an aficionado can tell you precisely when and where their favorite instrument was made, the wood it is made from, and that wood’s unique effect on the instrument’s sound. In The Guitar, Chris Gibson and Andrew Warren follow that fascination around the globe as they trace guitars all the way back to the tree. The authors take us to guitar factories, port cities, log booms, remote sawmills, Indigenous lands, and distant rainforests, on a quest for behind-the-scenes stories and insights into how guitars are made, where the much-cherished guitar timbers ultimately come from, and the people and skills that craft those timbers along the way.
Gibson and Warren interview hundreds of people to give us a first-hand account of the ins and outs of production methods, timber milling, and forest custodianship in diverse corners of the world, including the Pacific Northwest, Madagascar, Spain, Brazil, Germany, Japan, China, Hawaii, and Australia. They unlock surprising insights into longer arcs of world history: on the human exploitation of nature, colonialism, industrial capitalism, cultural tensions, and seismic upheavals. But the authors also strike a hopeful note, offering a parable of wider resonance—of the incredible but underappreciated skill and care that goes into growing forests and felling trees, milling timber, and making enchanting musical instruments, set against the human tendency to reform our use (and abuse) of natural resources only when it may be too late. The Guitar promises to resonate with anyone who has ever fallen in love with a guitar.
Sculpture in Wood was first published in 1950. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
In simple every-day language and with lavish use of photographs, a noted sculptor takes you, step-by-step, through the process of wood sculpture and explains how to appreciate and use this kind of art in your own home. The how-to-do-it section contains information on the tools needed, the various woods and their qualities, and finishes. Photographs showing examples of the author's work and that of other contemporary sculptors illustrate his points clearly. The beginner will find this book opens the way to a rewarding hobby; the serious artist will be challenged by Mr. Rood's forceful ideas on art.
Barrels—we rarely acknowledge their importance, but without them we would be missing out on some of the world’s finest beverages—most notably whiskies and wines—and of course for over two thousand years they’ve been used to store, transport, and age an incredibly diverse array of provisions around the globe. In this comprehensive and wide-ranging book, Henry Work tells the intriguing story of the significant and ever-evolving role wooden barrels have played during the last two millennia, revealing how the history of the barrel parallels that of technology at large.
Exploring how barrels adapted to the requirements of the world’s changing economy, Work journeys back to the barrel’s initial development, describing how the Celtic tribes of Northern Europe first crafted them in the first millennia BCE. He shows how barrels became intrinsically linked to the use of wood and ships and grew into a vital and flexible component of the shipping industry, used to transport not only wine and beer, but also nails, explosives, and even Tabasco sauce. Going beyond the shipping of goods, Work discusses the many uses of this cylindrical container and its relations—including its smaller cousin, the keg—and examines the process of aging different types of alcohol. He also looks at how barrels have survived under threat from today’s plastics, cardboards, and metals.
Offering a new way of thinking about one of the most enduring and successful products in history, Wood, Whiskey and Wine will be a must-read for everyone from technology buffs to beverage aficionados who wish to better understand that evasive depth of flavor.