Revisiting Liberty Hyde Bailey’s Nature-Study Idea in the Era of Climate Change
with John Linstrom, author
Wednesday, April 17, from 7-8pm ET
$10 AHS members/$15 non-members


The urgency to halt the progression of climate change requires much more than the implementation of scientific knowledge—it requires a revolution across the fields of education, culture, and the arts. In The Nature-Study Idea, Liberty Hyde Bailey (1858-1954), the “father of modern horticulture” and Progressive-Era educational reformer, articulated a similar need to reimagine education in light of socio-ecological crises at the dawn of the twentieth century. It all centered around the need to foster opportunities for curiosity and firsthand contact with the everyday landscape—whether in the woods and fields or in the garden, around the neighborhood, and on the farm. This talk will explore Bailey’s insights, how they emerged, and what they mean for us 120 years later as we mark the publication of the first modern, authoritative edition of the classic text and the launch of The Liberty Hyde Bailey Library from Cornell University Press.

John Linstrom is the Mellon Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow in Climate Humanities and Social Justice at the Climate Museum in New York City and series editor of The Liberty Hyde Bailey Library for Cornell University Press. His editions of Bailey’s work include The Nature-Study Idea and Related Writings (Cornell UP, 2023), The Liberty Hyde Bailey Gardener’s Companion (coedited; Cornell UP, 2019), and the centennial edition of The Holy Earth (Counterpoint, 2015). John is also a poet, and his debut poetry collection is To Leave for Our Own Country (Black Lawrence, 2024). He holds a PhD in English and American Literature from New York University and an MFA in Creative Writing and Environment from Iowa State University, and he is the former director of the Liberty Hyde Bailey Museum in South Haven, Michigan. He currently lives with his wife and daughter in Queens, New York.