Alabama Rivers: A Celebration and Challenge


To properly view the accompanying Google Earth files, follow instructions on Installing Google Earth page to download Google Earth Pro to your computer. Once installed, click the Google Earth Folder below each chapter title to download. The link will take you to an overview page which will provide a DOWNLOAD button in the upper right-hand corner of your web viewer. Click this downward facing arrow, select “open with Google Earth Pro (default) and click “ok.” Google Earth will open with the chapter folder.

William G. Deutsch, Alabama Rivers: A Celebration & Challenge (Florence, AL:
MindBridge Press, 2018), pp. xv, 229.

Bill Deutsch is a mostly retired aquatic ecologist from Auburn University. Equally important for this book, in 1992 he was co-founder of Alabama Water Watch, a community-based water monitoring and educational program that has been used as a model nationally and even internationally. In Alabama it led to Prof. Deutsch spending quality time in every major river basin in the state.

Alabama Rivers is divided into three parts. Part 1 (chapter 1-5) talks about the importance and richness of rivers in Alabama as a whole, from the Great Seal of the state to deep geology to the reasons for the richness of the flora and fauna. Part 2 (chapter 6-10) does the natural and human history of the state river basin by river basin: the Tennessee, the Alabama and its big tributaries Coosa and Tallapoosa; the Cahaba and Black Warrior rivers, the Tombigbee and Mobile systems; and lastly the Chattahoochee and coastal plan rivers. Part 3 (chapters 11-14) is on how public awareness and organization might help shape the future of this precious, indispensable riverine resource. Deutsch has given permission for this Google Earth folder based on his book to be posted on this website.

The Google Earth folder (.kmz file) is fairly useful with Part 1, most useful with Part 2 (the river basin by river basin study), and, while it has a few nice illustrations of Part 3, is frankly less useful there (there are no Google Earth footnotes for the very philosophical concluding Chapter 14, for example). The Google Earth folder is divided into chapters, and each layer or at least folder inside that chapter is listed by page number.


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