“(Jack) painstakingly researched his book, which introduces readers to the pioneers, families and guides who earned a living in some of the state’s most unforgiving territory. “Bound for Munsungan” is a bit like the territory it describes: It’s a hard-edged, rustic, no-nonsense account. You don’t find long, flowery passages full of adjectives and descriptions in Ahern’s work. The collected black-and-white photos take care of that brand of heavy lifting. You do learn something new on every page, however, as Ahern walks you though the region’s history and introduces you to people like Will Atkins, Milt Hall, Walter Grau and the Libby family.”
John Holyoke, Bangor Daily News, June 10, 2008
“Long before there were hunting clubs elsewhere, outdoorsmen along the Atlantic Seaboard gathered together in wilderness hunting and fishing camps…Ahern’s tales of rough-and-tumble adventure are set in the hinterlands of the Upper Aroostook and Allagash headwaters. The author interviewed dozens of former camp owners, guides and ordinary citizens who were part of the wilderness camp scene, or who became the repositories of the stories told by their grandfathers.”
Hunt Club Digest, Summer 2008
“Every once in a while I come across something that I feel you should be aware of. This is the case in a new book that just came out outlining the sporting camp history and development of the Upper Aroostook and Allagash headwater area as a hunting and fishing destination.
Well over ten years ago I heard by the woods telegraph that a returning guest of Bradford Camps was doing a history of the area and the camps. As I have always been interested in the history of the area I sent him a letter offering some materials that I had concerning Munsungan Hunting & Fishing Clubs origin and an invitation to visit me the following summer. This happened and we spent several days together talking, visiting surrounding camps and even some of the old guides in the Oxbow area. It also became very apparent that any history of the area had to include the whole watershed- as it was all tied together.
Over the past several years, the author, John (Jack) Ahern, made many trips to Maine and interviewed many who were directly involved as camp owners, guides, table girls, chore boys and such. And in this process was given access to many old pictures and other historic documents, as well as verbal history that now has been published as Bound for Munsungan that has just been released.
I have read everything that I could get my hands on about this area- and this book more than any other really captures the activities from the late 1800’s till today. It will become a go to reference for those who come behind us.
At about the same time I had just lost my Father, and the year prior to his death I had him write down his hunting stories in the area. These span over 50 years and give a good idea of what hunting, travel, and woods conditions were for over a half century. Jack saw fit to include these as an appendix to the book.
This book is now available at the Pear Tree Publishing and I am sure should be in some local book stores soon. I have also secured some copies that I will be offering for sale at my booth at the Orono, Wilton and Presque Isle Sportsman Shows.
Over the years I have read everything that’s available about this area and there is nothing that has the history so well documented and out lines the fishing and hunting activities from the late 1800’s to current times. It will become a classic in Maine sporting books.”
Jim Carter, Munsungan Hunting & Fishing Club
“Jack’s reference book is a testament to the history of Northern Maine. The book is full of interesting stories and facts taken from those northern woods. Some of the chronicles include famous people such as Jack Dempsey and Teddy Roosevelt. The book also serves as a genealogical record for some of the Maine inhabitants of that time, including the Atkins and Libby Families. The text is nicely enhanced by the numerous illustrations, including photos, maps and old advertisements. If you are passionate about history, hunting & fishing or the back woods of Maine, this is a great book to curl up with… ”
Christopher P. Obert, Owner, Pear Tree Publishing 2008