Thursday, July 13, 2006

The Encyclopedia of New England

The Encyclopedia of New England
Edited by Burt Feintuch and David H. Watters; Foreword by Donald Hall


Named one of the best reference books of 2005 by Library Journal
Often defined by the familiar images of taciturn Yankees, town meetings, maple syrup, and rocky seacoasts, New England is both a distinctively American place and a distinctive place within America. Yet these images present only one aspect of the richly varied region that is New England in the twenty-first century. Today traditional scenes of white-clapboard buildings surrounding an idyllic village green, hillside farms, and red-brick mills rub shoulders with advanced research centers, nuclear power plants, and urban neighborhoods of immigrants from around the globe.

In entries written by leading authorities in the field, The Encyclopedia of New England presents a comprehensive view of this important region, past and present. Both authoritative and entertaining, this single-volume reference will be an invaluable resource for the scholar and an irresistible pageturner for the browser.

The Encyclopedia contains
• 1,300 alphabetically arranged entries examining significant people, places, events, ideas,and artifacts• Fascinating and little-known facts that rarely appear in history books
• More than 500 illustrations and maps
• Contributions from nearly 1,000 distinguished scholars and writers, including journalists, academics, and specialists from museums, industries, and historical societies
• 1.5 million words in 22 thematic sections, ranging from agriculture to tourism, each with an introduction by a leading specialist in the field
• Extensive cross-references and a full index
BURT FEINTUCH is professor of Folklore and English and director of the Center for the Humanities at the University of New Hampshire. DAVID H. WATTERS is professor of English and director of the Center for New England Culture at the University of New Hampshire.

Did You Know . . .
• The Vermont legislature declared war on Nazi Germany in 1941, before Pearl Harbor.
• When Massachusetts schoolchildren petitioned the legislature to make the chocolate chip cookie the state cookie, it set off a firestorm because many people (including the governor) preferred Fig Newtons. Finally, in 1997 (Mass. Bill S-1716), the chocolate chip cookie became the official state cookie; the Fig Newton was unofficially declared the state “fruit cookie.”
• Basketball, candlepin bowling, lacrosse, racquetball, volleyball, and wiffle ball were all invented in New England.

From Yale University Press

Can be purchased at

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