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The Early Life of W.B. Carson by Robert M. Anderson

W. Burch Carson is known and remembered for his important work in conducting a thorough, on-the-ground census of the scant remaining population of native Texas desert bighorns in the Texas Trans-Pecos region in the 1940s. His work was invaluable to subsequent restoration efforts for Texas bighorns. But Burch was a fascinating personality in his own right, a consummate outdoorsman and loner who knew the Sierra Diablo, Baylor, and Beach mountain ranges better than anyone else has, before or since, and he was a student of their mysteries—the lost mines, the caves, the cliffs, the ghosts and legends. While Carson left Texas after World War II and became a successful rancher in Arkansas, his early life roaming the hills of West Texas is what shaped his life and outlook.

Robert M. Anderson, who has authored a shelf full of books about North American mountain hunting as well as numerous biographies, was a friend of Carson’s for some thirty-four years. His fascination with Carson’s early life in the Trans-Pecos and his groundbreaking studies of the declining desert bighorn population inspired him to write this book about Carson’s early life in the Texas wilderness. The book, lavishly illustrated with photos of Carson and his adventures, covers much more than his work with bighorn sheep. Anderson recounts Carson’s successful career as a taxidermist, his spelunking adventures, his ongoing search for gold and lost mines in the region, and his research into little-known incidents in the region’s history. It’s a fascinating glimpse not just of a one-of-a-kind, pioneering outdoorsman, but of a remarkable, mysterious, and still little-known region of the American Southwest.

Available from Safari Press.

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