This latest in the ""Regions of America"" series takes us into three heartland states formed in the early 1800's---Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. Written by a native of that area, the book is a remarkably sensitive---almost poetic---invocation of the past, a stimulating view of the present. The coming of the French in the Seventeenth Century is particularly interesting, as when Tonty created his settlements and trade centers along the rivers, only to have them taken by the British soon after. Moving on from Revolutionary times we see Chicago forming, industry and railroad moving in side by side, men like Lincoln and the former ""failure"" Ulysses Grant taking the reigns of power as the Civil War looms and takes shape. Then comes the great literary-political era following the Civil War, when Ohio Republicanism clashed with labor, or when men like Ohio's Sherwood Anderson grew and took note of the small American town for later fictional recreation. Henry Wallace is noted as one of the last in this long line of heartland intellectuals, as the area moves into the great shipping-farming-industrial complex it is today. The creation of the St. Lawrence Seaway, giving the heartland states a direct sea route to the world, provides a fitting coda to this really fine book. Should enjoy a wide audience.