R.M. Patterson: A Life of Great Adventure

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TouchWood Editions, Jul 6, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 312 pages
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David Finch’s highly regarded biography of R.M. Patterson is now available in paperback. The escapades of this great Canadian are brought to life in a story that combines the lure of gold, the thrill of wilderness exploration and comic tales about life on a southern Alberta ranch. With access to Patterson’s diaries, letters and photographs, as well as numerous interviews with Patterson and members of his family, Finch recounts the adventurous life of this well-loved outdoorsman, writer and rancher and sheds light on some of what Patterson left unsaid.


“A worthwhile addition to the literature of the Canadian North, a good read for anyone who wants to know more about the man who helped turn the Nahanni into the legendary river that it is.”— Edmonton Journal

“Finch presents us with the unlikely portrait of the Oxford University graduate who, on a lark, came to Canada in 1924 and decided to stay.”—Calgary Herald

“Calgary historian David Finch has produced a richly detailed portrait of the gentleman adventurer behind the byline.”—The Beaver


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The Early Years1898 to 1916
War and a Sort of Peace1917 to 1923
Homesteading1924 to 1926
Hard to Kill1927
Gold and Fur1928 and 1929
The Buffalo Head Years1929 to 1946
A Writing Life1947 to 1973
List of Works by RM Patterson
Reference Notes

The Twilight Years1974 to 1984

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About the author (2011)

Born in pre-revolutionary Cuba, David Finch is the only son of Canadian missionaries. After completing a portion of his education in Canada and Venezuela, Finch came to Canada for good and earned a master’s degree in post-confederation Canadian history at the University of Calgary. He presently lives in Calgary with his wife and daughter. In his spare time David likes to canoe, cross-country ski and hike in the Canadian Rockies. He builds and restores canoes and has a fine collection of watercraft.

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