Confluence: Rivers and Streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

By Scott Jost
Expected August 2019 from George F. Thompson Publishing

Chesapeake Bay is the world’s third-largest estuary. Its watershed extends over six states and is home to 18 million people. Confluence: Rivers and Streams in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed creates a portrait of the entire watershed through color panoramic photographs of river and stream confluences within it. Confluences are historically important sites of settlement, industry, commerce, transportation, and defense.

These photographs reveal the watershed’s tremendous range and interconnectedness as a natural system. By investigating how humans shape rivers and streams where they live and work, the photographs also reveal how attitudes toward water and land are inscribed in the landscapes and how these attitudes persist and change over time.

This book preserves the legacy of one of the world’s most important natural and cultural landscapes and serves as an enduring catalyst for further inquiries into history, ecology, and human place-making within the Chesapeake Bay watershed at a time of unprecedented change.

Please click the cover image above to view sample pages from the book.

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Shenandoah Valley Apples

By Scott Jost
Columbia College Chicago Press, 2014.

Shenandoah Valley Apples explores memories, experiences and insights related to the past, present and future of apple growing in the Shenandoah Valley and Blue Ridge regions of Virginia through photographs and the oral histories of apple growers and workers, representatives of apple-related businesses, and grass-roots apple historians.

Apple growing in Virginia reflects a rich and important history. Virginia is the nation’s sixth largest apple producer, though economic pressures, international trade, encroaching development and other issues are changing the industry dramatically. Since 1977, apple acreage in Virginia has dropped by a third, and half of all growers have left the business. At the same time, stories of adaptation, perseverance and success are also part of the narrative.

Please click the cover image above to view selected pages from the book.

Read more about the Shenandoah Valley Apples project and book →
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The Great Valley Road of Virginia: Shenandoah Landscapes from Prehistory to the Present

Edited by Warren R. Hofstra and Karl Raitz with 53 photographs by Scott Jost
University of Virginia Press in association with the Center for American Places, 2010.

Fifty-three photographs selected from my portfolio of approximately 100 prints were published in The Great Valley Road of Virginia: Shenandoah Landscapes from Prehistory to the Present, (University of Virginia Press, 2010) edited by Dr. Warren Hofstra, Shenandoah University, and Dr. Karl Raitz, University of Kentucky.

These photographs were made within the book’s study area along U.S. Route 11 between the James River at Buchanon, Virginia, and the Potomac River at Williamsport, Maryland. They explore the Valley Road’s built environment—gas stations, inns and motels, houses, storefronts, and cemeteries—and the region’s physical geography as a means of visually describing and interpreting development and change, history and meaning along the Great Valley Road.

From the Publisher’s Website: The Great Valley Road of Virginia chronicles the story of one of America’s oldest, most historic, and most geographically significant roads. Emphasized throughout the chapters is a concern for landscape character and the connection of the land to the people who traveled the road and to permanent residents, who depended upon it for their livelihoods. Also included are chapters about the towns supported by the road as well as the relationship of physical geography (the lay of the land) to the engineering of the road. More than one hundred maps, photographs, engravings, and line drawings enhance the book’s value to scholars and general readers alike.

Winner of the Allen G. Noble Book Award, Pioneer American Society, 2010.

Please click the cover image above to view a portfolio of photographs from the book.

Blacks Run: An American Stream

By Scott Jost
Center for American Places, 1999.

Blacks Run: An American Stream combines landscape photographs and excerpts from interviews with community activists, city administrators and workers, local historians and property owners to explore the history, decline and possible renewal of Blacks Run, a severely degraded stream flowing through the city of Harrisonburg, Virginia where I live. Blacks Run: An American Stream reflects on political, social and ecological dynamics that have shaped, and continue to shape, nature within urban spaces.

Please click the cover image above to view selected pages from the book.