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L.L. Bean's story is also America's story. The ideas and events that drove the company's development are all related to what was happening in the wider world. From the rugged, individualistic legacy of Teddy Roosevelt in the 1910s to soldiers' experiences in both World Wars, from the "back to the land" movement in the 1960s and 1970s that brought millions of people to the wilderness for the first time to the Preppy Handbook craze of the 1980s when the styles of New England suddenly enthralled the nation, Guaranteed to Last tells a complete and fascinating story that will engage every reader. At the heart of the book is a fresh telling of the fascinating L.L. Bean story--the tale of how an unknown hunter, working with $400 in borrowed capital, invented a new kind of shoe and, marching to the beat of his own drum, remade the outdoor industry. And it's a story about how the company helped America learn to love the outdoors. A brisk narrative based on fresh interviews and research by Jim Gorman, a leading travel and adventure journalist, traces the most important incidents in the company's history, as well as the defining products and the most memorable people. The book will feature scores of photographs, illustrations, and pieces of ephemera, including fascinating images of L.L. Bean hunting in Maine in the 1910s; the earliest mailers and catalogs that defined the look and voice of the company; personal correspondence to L.L. Bean from every era; snapshots of ordinary Americans outfitted in their L.L. Bean gear; and much more. It is both a celebration of 100 years of L.L. Bean, and a look at the essential qualities of the brand that will guide its next century.
About the Author
Jim Gorman is an award-winning book and magazine author. He's a contributingeditor to Backpacker and Popular Mechanics magazines, and his writing hasappeared in Men's Health, Runner's World, This Old House, Country Living, National Geographic Adventure, Better Homes & Gardens, Endless Vacation, Bicycling, Boy's Life, and elsewhere. He writes primarily about theenvironment, outdoor exploration on foot and mountain bike, health &wellness, home & garden, and energy conservation. Jim's work has won a variety of awards, including a National Magazine Award(2003) for Wild In The Parks, National Geographic Adventure Magazine;Travel Writer of the Year Award from the Caribbean Tourism Organization forWild Beauties, Endless Vacation Magazine; and the Pluma de Plata (SilverQuill) Award for Best Travel Writing on Mexico from the Mexico TourismBoard, for Zacatecas: Desert Rose, also in Endless Vacation Magazine. Hewas also a National Magazine Award Finalist in 2005 for Grail Trails, National Geographic Adventure Magazine. Prior to his career as a freelance writer, Jim was an editor at BackpackerMagazine, the website GORP.com, and the environmental journal World Watch.