Route 22 is a 350-mile highway that connects Manhattan and Montreal. One day while driving on it, Benjamin Swett was struck by the contrast between the landscape he could see through his car window and the more romantic one he remembered from his childhood. Without any particular plan, he set out to discover how the upstate New York of James Fenimore Cooper and Thomas Cole became this other place-a seemingly lost, untended region of Off-Track Betting Parlors and Tattoo Emporiums, abandoned diners, and ancient buildings crumbling into forgotten canals. The result of his exploration is this book-an insightful and deeply personal meditation on this complicated and beautiful landscape, accompanied by ninety evocative photographs.
The former director of the Parks in Print program at the New York City Parks Department, Benjamin Swett is best known for Great Trees of New York City: A Guide; Bronx River New York; Fort Greene Park Brooklyn; Route 22, and many other publications. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and three children.