Ruth Obee’s new book History in Stone: The Story of Red Rock Canyon, is a 260-page narrative that begins, â la James Michener, with the area’s geological origins, dating back 1.75 billion years to some of the oldest rock on the planet. It tells the story of recently discovered dinosaur tracks, marine fossils, and archeological evidence of an early human presence on the open space. Red Rock Canyon’s rich and diverse wildlife ecology is fully detailed in first-time lists of flora and fauna – from iconic Colorado wildflowers to big hairy carnivores.
In addition to geology, paleontology, ecology and archeology, a chapter is devoted to the land’s more modern industrial history, starting from 1866 when settlers first laid claim to the land, and including its 19th century stone quarries. A subsequent chapter profiles the eccentric and colorful Bock family who owned the property for 80 years, drawing on dozens of personal interviews as well as archival research. The book’s keystone chapter documents, step by step, the five-year long, hard-fought, and ultimately successful citizen-waged battle against powerful, out-of-state development interests, to save the land for the benefit of all. The epilogue then brings the story up to the present with the recent acquisition of two more historic parcels, White Acres and the widely popular Manitou Springs Section 16 – making Red Rock Canyon even larger today than its more famous sister park, Garden of the Gods.
Also featured are stunning color photographs by Bill Koerner; a beautiful landscape painting by local artist Laura Reilly, an arresting lithograph of Garden of the Gods by the noted Pikes Peak artist Archie Musick, as well as charming 19th century line drawings and historic old photographs.
Order the book here at Amazon.com