The Platte


The Platte

Channels in Time

Paul A. Johnsgard
With a new preface and afterword by the author

168 pages
15 photographs, 3 maps, 1 chart


June 2008


$14.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

Arising in two separate streams high in the Rockies and flowing east across the plains to meet the Missouri near Omaha, Nebraska, the Platte River is a microcosm of the geologic, plant, animal, and human worlds. Way station for the sandhill cranes, home of the Plains Indians, and artery for the great westward migrations of the nineteenth century, the Platte Valley offers a rich diversity of life and history. Focusing on the central role the Platte has played in shaping Nebraska and its heritage, both human and natural, Paul A. Johnsgard presents in this book a “brief and personal portrait of the river as it has existed in the past and still exists today.”
“My special hope in doing so,” he writes, “is that the value of the river as a living, complex, and natural ecologic system can be more fully appreciated, and that whatever steps may be necessary might be taken to preserve the river’s integrity.”
Johnsgard tells the story of the Platte from prehistoric times to the present and then assesses its future. A selection of photographs and checklists of birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles, fishes, and common plants of the Platte River and its valley enhance the book’s interest and usefulness. This Bison Books edition includes a new preface and afterword by the author.

Author Bio

Paul A. Johnsgard is Foundation Regents Professor Emeritus in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He is the author of fifty books on natural history, most recently The Niobrara: A River Running through Time and Prairie Dog Empire: A Saga of the Shortgrass Prairie, both published by the University of Nebraska Press.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Bison Books Edition
List of Illustrations
The Land
The First People
The River
The Next People
The Island
The Sandbar
The Shoreline Forest
The Wet Meadow
The Wood Lot
The Prairie
The Future of the River
The Future of the People
The Future of the Past
Checklist of Birds of the Middle Platte Valley
Checklist of Mammals of the Platte Valley
Checklist of Amphibians and Reptiles of Hall County
Checklist of Platte River Fishes in Nebraska
Checklist of Common Plants on the Platte River Flood Plain
Bibliographical Notes
Further References

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