Author to speak on 'Water Connections'

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MANCHESTER — Journalist and historian Jim Rousmaniere examines our impact on water and water's impact on us from the Industrial Revolution to the present day in a talk at 6 p.m. Friday at Northshire Bookstore in Manchester.

Rousmaniere's book "Water Connections: What Fresh Water Means to Us, What We Mean to Water" focuses on a stream in New Hampshire and how it has been affected by changes in technology, economics, pollution, new ideas,and human action.

The book includes specific stories of contamination and our attempts to bend water to our will in the name of progress, and the resulting disasters. But Rousmaniere focuses just as much on what we still can do as what has been already done, impressing on us that we too, like water, are always changing.

The geographic scope of the book is largely New England, but also includes recent experiences in other parts of the United States and the world. The book is as much about people as it is water with stories about conservationists, artists, reservoir managers, government officials, water power people, fishermen, scientists and ordinary citizens around water.

Rousmaniere spent 6 years studying human interactions with water — past and present — to produce an authoritative report on what water means to us and what we mean to water. His book takes in our changing ways around water power, floods and flood control, water pollution and water treatment, watershed protection and water technology.

After graduating from Harvard, Rousmaniere surveyed irrigation canals in southern India as a Peace Corps volunteer and then began a 43-Year Career in journalism. He reported on economics in The Washington Bureau of The Baltimore Sun before being named editor and president of The Keene (NH) Sentinel, from which he is now retired. He lives in Roxbury, New Hampshire, with his wife, a holistic nutrition counselor, and is the father of three daughters and one granddaughter. He is active in town governance and community affairs.

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