A tremendous amount of research and investigation has gone into this study of life, as it was lived by ordinary men and women, on the Cumberland before 1803. It ranges from Virginia and the Carolinas to Tennessee with the opening of ways into the wilderness that were made possible by the woodsmen and hunters and over which traveled the traders, the settlers and the farmers. From old records, journals and surveys come the facts of how they built their houses, what they wore and ate, what furniture they had and how it was used, what were their tools, guns and other equipment, and how their skills developed. It is a record too of discovery and travels, of Indians and Attakullakulla (Little Carpenter, a Cherokee) in particular, of the years it took to learn to conquer the woods and acquire the mastery of existence in these new lands, and of changes that resulted. A carefully filled in picture of the ""seedbed of the west"", this provides a valuable reference book, with innumerable foot-notes, for other researchers and scholars, and an important regional source book.