Big "G" featured in Hillside Letters book
May 23, 2007 | 482 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Grand County's so-called big "G" has been the source of pride, and sometimes controversy for decades now. Now, a new book by author Evelyn Corning features the emblem, as well as hillside letters from across the country.             Anyone who has traveled by car in the West, has probably come across at least a few of the hundreds of hillside letters that dot the landscape. For those who have wondered what the letters represent, a new book, complete with photographs of each known hillside letter, is designed to answer that question.

    Representing towns and schools from Ajo, Ariz., to Zap, N.D., these mountain landmarks were created by locals with hometown pride or students full of school spirit. According to author Evelyn Corning, some letters have been around for more than 100 years. Many have a story to tell, and all are beloved community icons that boldly declare to all within their view: We are here. This is our place, our school, our home.

    Hillside Letters A to Z: A Guide to Hometown Landmarks spells out in detail this distinctive western phenomenon, exploring its origins, customs, and controversies, as well as some of the nuts and bolts (or ABCs) of letter building. Adults and children alike will enjoy an engaging collection of stories featuring 60 letters from fourteen western states.

    Sixteen of the stories are about Utah communities including a number in southern Utah such as the G in Moab, Escalante's E, the T and BV in Tropic, the V in Orderville, the K in Kanab, and the D in St. George. The book also features the controversy involving Moab's block G being painted over with brown paint, then being repainted by locals Guy Johnston and David Stewart.

    Color photographs illustrate the featured letters, and a map shows letter sites nationwide. The book lists all 426 known U.S. hillside letters, noting where they are located, and what they stand for. Hillside Letters A to Z is available at Arches Book Company.

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