February 27, 2014

FREE Weidensaul lecture March 29

"Gone for Another Day" shares unpublished nature sketches and journal entries of late Pennsylvania artist Ned Smith

Hawk Mountain Sanctuary will feature a free talk by Pulitzer Prize-nominated author Scott Weidensaul on his latest book Gone for Another Day, at 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 29 in the Visitor Center gallery. During the talk, Weidensaul will share highlights from the book, a sequel to Gone for the Day by the late Pennsylvania naturalist Ned Smith, and featuring nearly 50 years of unpublished field sketches, drawings, and hand-drawn maps by the artist.

Weidensaul, who is a long-time board member at Hawk Mountain, says it’s a pleasure and also is appropriate to talk about Ned Smith at the Sanctuary.

“Hawk Mountain was a favorite of Ned Smith's, his connections to the Sanctuary were deep, and he made annual hawk-watching pilgrimages for many years,” Weidensaul explains.

“In 1984, he marked the Sanctuary's 50th anniversary with "Hawk Mountain Gold," a painting of two golden eagles passing the North Lookout. It was one of his finest works, and among the last before his death,” he adds.

Smith was among the premier nature artists of the 20th Century, and over his 45-year career, created thousands of paintings and drawings for publications like Pennsylvania Game News, National Wildlife, Field and Stream, and Sports Afield, along with dozens of originals, artwork for books, and fine art prints. Gone for Another Day includes previously unpublished entries from the personal nature journals of the artist, many from Pennsylvania, but also from his trips across North America.

Weidensaul spent two years scouring the entries from Smith's journals, which fill nine three-ring binders. The final selection offers a variety of work, and spans from the summer of 1936 when Smith was 17 years old, through his very last entry on April 22, 1985, the day before he died of a heart attack at age 65. It also features dozens of illustrations and photos of the artist with his late wife Marie in the outdoors.

Weidensaul is a Schuylkill County author, naturalist, and lecturer, as well as a field researcher specializing in birds of prey. He has written more than two books, including his most recent, The First Frontier: The Forgotten History of Struggle, Savagery and Endurance in Early America.

Celebrating 80 years in raptor conservation, Hawk Mountain Sanctuary is the world's first refuge for birds of prey and an international center for raptor conservation. The 2,500-acre Sanctuary, 8-mile trail system and Visitor Center is open to the public year-round. A trail fee or membership dues supports local to global conservation programs, including public education, professional training and scientific research programs. Visit to learn more.