Books That Take You Where You Want to Go

Readers, Travelers, Hikers, Chefs & Home Bakers; All You Armchair Historians, Naturists, Humanists–Every Lover of Fine Things (& Quality Books):

Welcome back to the eponymous blog of Vermont’s original name in publishing. We’ve been away a while; we have no (good) excuses.

But we’re back, totally redesigned, rejuvenated, excited to share with you all the backcountry-bookish things we’ve been up to in Woodstock, VT.

First, let’s bring you up to speed. In its latest, uninterrupted incarnation, The Countryman Press just turned 37. Back in 1973, Peter and Jane Jennison lovingly resuscitated the name of a tiny Vermont publisher that had begun in 1936. Countryman owes its humble origins to a man named Vrest Orton of Weston, VT, who, on a letterpress in his own barn, printed limited edition short books by the likes of Edgar Lee Masters and Stephen Vincent Benet.

Countryman soon expanded its offerings, publishing books on country crafts and cooking, elegantly produced hunting and fishing titles, and photo albums in conjunction with Vermont Life Magazine. The Press we know today was beginning to take shape…but, well, as it happens, Orton decided to move on to other legendary pursuits. By the mid-’60s, Countryman lay dormant, and remained so for a decade, until 1973.

Ye shall know us by a circumscribed tree.

Fast forward to present day, through sale of the Press to W. W. Norton & Co. in 1996, and Countryman’s name reaches far beyond Vermont’s borders. Our signature travel series, Explorer’s Guides, which began 30 years ago with Christina Tree’s guide to Maine (now in its 15th edition), encompasses destinations throughout the United States and Latin America. Our 50 Hikes series is just as expansive. So is our newer, fast-growing, trip-ready collection of Backroads & Byways titles.

We have the honor of publishing the cookbooks of fellow Vermonters, EatingWell Magazine and The King Arthur Flour Company, which have garnered an embarrassment of awards and award nominations over the years.

All of the above and a good deal more…though let’s cut this dissertation short. Let’s talk about right now. Fall is fallen, winter shoulders in–and we think you’ll find something you like in our new catalog. Garden-fresh recipes from a monk? New reasons to book a trip to Panama or Belize? Hiking trails in Alabama that may blow your mind? It’s all right here:

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