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The Landscape of Mount Desert Island Past and Present
In his introduction to the report, Shaler notes that "I am indebted to the gratuitous labor of Mr. Samuel Storrow, of Boston, Mass., for the photographs used as a basis of the illustrations of this report." In the early years of publications by the USGS, the use of hand sketches based on photographs was a common practice to show figures and plates in the reports. In this website, we will compare some of the original figures in the report with present-day photographs of the same sites. Also of interest is the topographic map dated 1882, and used as the base for the two geological maps. Today, Mount Desert Island is most well known as the location of Acadia National Park. The 1882 map was published well before the national park was established, and it is interesting to note the name changes of some of the mountains; for example, Cadillac Mountain was known as Green Mountain, and had a restaurant and tea house on its summit, was accessed by carriage road, but also by a cog railway, similar to the one still in existence on Mt. Washington in New Hampshire.
The location map approximately locates the viewpoint of Shaler's plates and the modern photos.
Chadwick, G. H., 1939, Geology of Mount Desert Island, Maine: American Journal of Science, v. 237, no. 5, p. 355-363.
Chadwick, G. H., 1944, The geology of Mount Desert Island (Acadia National Park): New York Academy of Sciences, Transactions, series 2, v. 6, no. 6, p. 171-178.
Chapman, C. A., 1962, The geology of Mount Desert Island, Maine--With explanation and descriptive field guide: privately printed, Urbana, Illinois, 52 p.
Chapman, C. A., 1970, The geology of Acadia National Park: Chatham Press, Old Greenwich, Connecticut, 128 p.
Gilman, R. A., Chapman, C. A., Lowell, T. V., and Borns, H. W., Jr., 1988, The geology of Mount Desert Island; a visitor's guide to the geology of Acadia National Park: Maine Geological Survey, Bulletin 38, 50 p.
Kelley, J. T., 2002, Sea-level change on Mt. Desert Island: Maine Geological Survey website.
The geology of the Island of Mount Desert, Maine, Shaler, Nathaniel Southgate, 1889, Part 2; The geology of the Island of Mount Desert, Maine: U.S. Geological Survey, 8th Annual Report, Part 2, p. 987-1061.
Website text and photos by Tom Weddle unless noted otherwise. Dave Manski, Acadia National Park, helped identify mountain summits.
Originally published on the web as the November 2011 Site of the Month.
Last updated on December 9, 2011
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