“The beauty of this book… lies in Mitchell’s intimacy with the tract of land … the depth of the setting deepens the reader’s feel for the humans that populate it”
--- Verlyn Kilnkenborg in Audubon Magazine
An Inquiry into the Private Ownership of Land
Perseus Books, 1998
How did a nation built on a vision of wide open spaces come to believe so fervently in the private ownership of land? In order to explore this question, Mitchell examines in depth the 500 acre site of a former Indian village on Scratch Flat. From the heart-breaking saga of a single, dispossessed Indian tribe that occupied the tract, through contemporary land-use battles, the question of land taking, and occasionally hilarious head to head collisions between developers and conservationists, not to mention his own trespasses, Mitchell explores this question from virtually all angles, in a fascinating and beautifully told story.