In the tradition of A Civil Ac tionâ€”the true story of a North Carolina outdoorsman who teams up with his Appalachian â€śmountain peopleâ€ť neighbors to save treasured land from being destroyed Living alone in his wooded mountain retreat, Jay Leutze gets a call from a whip-smart fourteen-year-old, Ashley Cook, and her aunt, Ollie Cox, who say a mining company is intent on tearing down Belview Mountain, the towering peak above their house. Ashley and her family, who live in a little spot known locally as Dog Town, are â€śmountain people,â€ť with a way of life and speech unique to their home high in the Appalachians. They suspect the mining company is violating the law, and they want Jay, a nonpracticing attorney, to stop the destruction of the mountain. Jay, a devoted naturalist and fisherman, quickly decides to join their cause. So begins the epic quest of the â€śDog Town Bunch,â€ť a battle that involves fiery public hearings, clandestine surveillance of the mine operatorâ€™s activities, ferocious pressure on public officials, and high-stakes legal brinksmanship in the North Carolina court system. Jay helps assemble a talented group of environmental lawyers to do battle with the well-funded attorneys protecting the mining companyâ€™s plan to dynamite Belview Mountain, which happens to sit next to the famous Appalachian Trail, the 2,184-mile national park that stretches from Maine to Georgia. As the mining company continues to level the forest and erect a gigantic rock-crushing plant on the site, Jayâ€™s group searches frantically for a way to stop an act of environmental desecration that will destroy a fragile wild place and mar the Appalachian Trail forever. Much more than the record of a legal battle, Stand Up That Mountain takes the reader to a remote corner of Appalachia, a region often stereotyped and little understood, even now in the twenty-first century. A naturally elegant writer, Jay Leutze delivers a powerful, beautifully written story full of remarkable characters, such as â€śWingfoot,â€ť an elusive protector of the Appalachian Trail; a stubborn mining company engineer intent on pulling down the mountain in the face of intense opposition; and Ron Howell, a retired and legendary North Carolina Superior Court judge known as the â€śHeel Houndâ€ť for his relentless pursuit of legal victory. Jayâ€™s plaintiff group is eventually joined by several national conservation groups who see that Belview Mountain and the Appalachian Trail must be protected for future generations of Americans. A great contemporary story that demonstrates what is possible when local people set their minds to righting a local wrong, Stand Up That Mountain will appeal to conservationists, hikers, attorneys, and readers fascinated by Appalachia and rural life, and anyone interested in a compelling story both well told and true.
Law, Environmental & Natural Resources Law,