cover of book

Gone to the Swamp: Raw Materials for the Good Life in the Mobile-Tensaw Delta
by Robert Leslie Smith
University of Alabama Press, 2008
Paper: 978-0-8173-5494-7 | eISBN: 978-0-8173-8069-4
Library of Congress Classification F332.B2S63 2008
Dewey Decimal Classification 975.857304



To make a living here, one had to be capable, confident, clever and inventive, know a lot about survival, be able to fashion and repair tools, navigate a boat, fell a tree, treat a snakebite, make a meal from whatever was handy without asking too many questions about it, and get along with folks.

This fascinating and instructive book is the careful and unpretentious account of a man who was artful in all the skills needed to survive and raise a family in an area where most people would be lost or helpless. Smith’s story is an important record of a way of life beginning to disappear, a loss not fully yet realized. We are lucky to have a work that is both instructive and warm-hearted and that preserves so much hard-won knowledge.

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