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Ohio University Press Book selected for National Book Festival

“Settling Ohio: First Peoples and Beyond,” an anthology published by Ohio University Press, has been selected by the Ohio Center for the Book to represent the state in the Great Reads from Great Places program at the Library of Congress’s National Book Festival.

“Settling Ohio” features essays exploring the state’s rich history, from indigenous peoples to non-native settlers. The anthology emerged from a 2020 conference held at Ohio University in part as a response to David McCullough’s 2019 controversial best seller, “The Pioneers: The Heroic Story of the Settlers Who Brought the American Ideal West.”

“‘Settling Ohio’ is essentially a Bobcat production,” says Press Director Beth Pratt. “Edited and with contributions by two OHIO College of Arts and Sciences professors, Timothy G. Anderson and Brian Schoen, it also includes contributions from former president M. Duane Nellis, Professor Joseph Gingerich, and former graduate students William Hunter and Joseph Ross. This recognition highlights the important scholarly work being done at Ohio University.”

The essays in “Settling Ohio” delve into numerous aspects of the state’s history, from the significance of the Hopewell Ceremonial Earthworks, which achieved UNESCO World Heritage status in 2023, to the enduring legacy of Johnny Appleseed. The Afterword, penned by Chief Glenna J. Wallace of the Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma, offers an essential indigenous perspective.

The National Book Festival, scheduled for Aug. 24, 2024, in Washington, D.C., will feature “Settling Ohio” alongside other noteworthy selections from across the country. The annual festival is a major literary event celebrating books, reading, and literacy. Bringing together authors, publishers, and book lovers, the festival typically draws tens of thousands of visitors.

This marks the second consecutive year that an Ohio University Press publication has been selected for the Great Reads from Great Places program. “When Grandma Gatewood Took a Hike,” was recognized as the Ohio Center for the Book’s 2023 youth selection.

For more information about “Settling Ohio: First Peoples and Beyond” and other publications from Ohio University Press, please visit

May 16, 2024
Staff reports