Clear Pond: The Reconstruction of a Life

Roger Mitchell, Author Syracuse University Press $29.95 (230p) ISBN 978-0-8156-0257-6
At the age of 45, poet Mitchell decided to learn more about the place where he'd grown up, New York State's Adirondack region. In his research, he found a name, place and date in a diary: Israel Johnson had built a sawmill at Clear Pond in 1836. Would it be possible to reconstruct this man's life and times? In an intensive five-year search, Mitchell talked to historians and librarians; studied census reports, deed books and war records; traced family members and searched the National Archives. We rejoice when, in 1986, he meets an 87-year-old great-grandson of Israel Johnson in the town of Adirondack. A remarkable piece of historical detective work and an engaging story, Mitchell's account offers valuable information for others pursuing genealogical questions. Photos. (June)
Reviewed on: 04/29/1991
Release date: 05/01/1991
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