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SLCL Foundation's Westfall Series Presents Historian and Journalist Peter Stark

Press Release

Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 10:00a.m.
The St. Louis County Library Foundation’s ‘Buzz’ Westfall Favorite Author Series is pleased to present journalist and author Peter Stark for a discussion and signing of his book “Astoria: Astor and Jefferson’s Lost Pacific Empire, A Story of Wealth, Ambition, and Survival.”
The event will take place at Library Headquarters (1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd.) on Thursday, April 10, at 7:00 p.m. The program is free and open to the public. Books will be available for purchase at the event from Left Bank Books.
“Astoria” is the thrilling, true-adventure tale of the 1810 Astor Expedition, an epic journey to forge an American empire on the Pacific Coast. Peter Stark offers a harrowing saga in which a band of explorers battled nature, starvation and madness to establish the first American settlement in the Pacific Northwest and opened up what would become the Oregon trail.
Six years after Lewis and Clark began their journey to the Pacific Northwest, John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson, turned their sights to founding a colony akin to Jamestown on the West Coast and transforming the nation into a Pacific trading power. Unfolding over the course of three years, from 1810 to 1813, “Astoria” is a tale of high adventure and incredible hardship in the wilderness and at sea. Of the more than 140 members of the two advance parties that reached the West Coast–one crossing the Rockies, the other rounding Cape Horn–nearly half perished by violence.
Author and correspondent for Outside magazine Peter Stark recreates this pivotal moment in American history, drawing on original source material to tell the amazing true story of the Astor Expedition.
Peter Stark is the author of “The Last Empty Spaces: A Past and Present Journey Through the Blank Spots on the American Map;” “Last Breath: The Limits of Adventure;” “At the Mercy of the River: An Exploration of the Last African Wilderness;” and the essay collection “Driving to Greenland: Arctic Travel, Northern Sport, and Other Ventures in the Heart of Winter”. A correspondent for Outside, he has written for Smithsonian and The New Yorker, among other publications, and has been nominated for a National Magazine Award.
The program with Peter Stark is a St. Louis County Library ‘Buzz’ Westfall Favorite Author Series presentation. The Westfall series features authors of politics, current issues, history, and sports. The series is co-sponsored by Jack Dubinsky and Sons; McMahon Berger; Sachs Properties; Brown Smith Wallace LLC; Royal Banks of Missouri; St. Louis Business Journal; Midwest Library Service; The Booksource; Ivey-Selkirk Auctioneers; S.M. Wilson & Co.; and Stifel, Nicolaus.