Many of you know I am a devoted fan of vintage magazines, and I am far from the only one. One such fan--Bob Pitman--has taken his love of these magazines even further, and spent a ton of time and effort creating the web site Classic Outdoor Magazines.
Bob has taken 140 original magazines and made them available on DVD-Rom as high-resolution PDF files. The CD contains titles ranging from 1899-1940 and includes some of the mainstays, like Outdoor Life, Field & Stream, and National Sportsman, as well as some obscure titles like Camp & Trail and All Outdoors. These are taken from scans from original magazines, and not from previously available (and usually low resolution) internet material.
Why has he dedicated so much time to this? Pretty simple answer, actually. He writes:
"Woods and water and the plethora of related recreational activities enrich our lives enormously. The hunters, anglers and governmental leaders of the early 20th century defined and shaped a system of managed natural resources for future generations. Their combined efforts ensured a bright future for today's anglers, hunters, campers, hikers, environmentalist, nature lovers and bird watchers. Outdoor magazines were a critical component in this process as they entertained and educated readers. Importantly magazines helped develop unity in the ethics of natural resource usage across the country. Stop game hogs. Stop water pollution. Stop over harvest. Maintain preserves and natural spaces. Manage resources using scientific principles, etc. The outdoor public, with the magazine glue, influenced governmental management to meet desired outcomes.
My goal has been to create a progressive and inclusive library of mags from the early formative years of recreational hunting and angling and natural resource management. The library I accumulated, 140 magazines, is certainly not complete but is a representative slice of the magazines and their contents. My grandfather would have read the historic magazines (1899-1940) I collected."
As individual issues of some of these titles sell for $150 or more, it is amazing to be able to access them here in one place, and for only $14.95. A pretty cool deal if you ask me.
As we've been working on a master index of major sporting periodicals here at Whitefish Press for seven years, it is great to run across someone dedicated to putting this research material out. I found the DVD to be easy to use and greatly informative, and moreover, a great bargain at that price.
Bob's Classic Outdoor Magazine CD-Rom is $14.95 and available from his Classic Outdoor Magazines web site.
NOTE: Bob will be at the Bartlesville NFLCC Show, so stop by and check it out yourself.
-- Dr. Todd