Stand Up That Mountain:
The Battle to Save One Small Community
in the Wilderness Along the Appalachian Trail

Jay Erskine Leutze

Scribner, 2012
387 pages

Noted by Kathleen Brewin Lewis

North Carolina outdoorsman Jay Leutze was minding his own business, just hanging out at his mountain retreat and planting some tomatoes, when he received a phone call from a 14-year-old girl and her Aunt Ollie. They’d heard he was a lawyer, albeit a nonpracticing one, and they desperately wanted his help. The Clark Stone Company had begun to dynamite their beloved Belview Mountain and forever alter the views along the Appalachian Trail, and the Putnam Mine was in the process of securing a 99-year lease that would allow them to destroy the landscape for miles. Stand Up That Mountain is Leutze’s well-written chronicle of the five-year legal battle to stop the mining efforts and conserve the mountain. It’s also the story of the “Dog Town Bunch,” a disparate group of colorful Appalachian citizens and ardent environmentalists who come together for the good of the land and the preservation of a cherished place.  

Stand Up That Mountain is the 2013 winner of the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) Award for Nonfiction, and Leutze has remained involved in efforts to protect the Southern Appalachian Mountains. An expert in and advocate for state and federal funding for public land acquisition, he is also a trustee of the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy.

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Kathleen Brewin Lewis is senior editor of Flycatcher.

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