IRON BREW by Stewart H. Holbrook
Kirkus Star


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This is even a better book than the author's story of the lumber industry, Holy Old Mackinaw (Macmillan, reported on page 59 in 1938), and the subject, steel, has perhaps a wider audience. He tells its story from the early days of iron, through the dramatic struggle over patents and methods in conversion of iron into steel, through the discovery of ore in various places, Northern Michigan, Minnesota, etc., to the present, with its labor struggles and the set-up of the moment with the two camps of the C I O and the A F of L. Most interesting of all, possibly, are the vigorous pictures of the dramatic personalities which have gone into the history of iron and steel -- Carnegie, Frick, Gary, Schwab, Captain Bill Jones (our favorite of them all). Then there is the story of the cities that grew up around iron and steel, and how the industry changed the pattern of the land, and of its people. His description of the steel strike of 1892 is the high spot of the book, and the best description of a strike I have read. There are later strikes, but this stands out above them all. A real man's book -- a picture of an industry that is bone and sinew of a country -- written with a keen sense of drama, of history, of the human element, of its realistic and its romantic sides. Easy reading and should be easy selling.

Pub Date: Sept. 12th, 1939
Publisher: Macmillan