New Mexico Magazine
The impetus behind the odd amalgam known as High-Lonesome Books is not to be discovered by Oprah. It’s 5 year-old Bud Salmon. Bud, says his dad, author-publisher M.H. “Dutch” Salmon, is the one who causes him and his wife to dedicate themselves to the proposition that they’ve got to make enough profit every year to feed him, clothe him and provide for his education.
High-Lonesome Books, a 14-year-old family enterprise located on a historic, five-acre homestead in the Gila foothills just outside of Silver City, New Mexico, reflects Dutch Salmon’s philosophy that “the work we love should be the work we do.” High-Lonesome combines all of Salmon’s loves: a small farm (selling the tastiest goat cheese west of France), a book publishing and used-and-rare-book business, his partner in life and business, Cherie, and, of course, Bud.
The High-Lonesome catalog lists some 19 titles currently in print. Besides Dutch Salmon’s own works of fiction and nonfiction, it includes books about western Americana, southwest New Mexico history, conservation and the great outdoors (particularly fishing and hunting with hounds), as well as more than 1,000 used, rare and out-of-print titles on the West, country sports, natural history and adventure. All are on display in High-Lonesome’s showroom, which is open to visitors.
Dutch Salmon is a bright light in the late-coming southwest New Mexico literary scene. His first and still best-selling book, Gila Descending, which chronicles his 200-mile wilderness journey down the Gila River in a canoe with a hound dog and a tomcat, lauched his small publishing venture and earned praise from such writers as John Nichols and Edward Abbey. Now he is coming out with a second edition of his novel, Home is the River, which should resound with the current Mexican gray wolf reintroduction program in the Gila. Set in thinly disguised, present-day Silver City, the story pits Salmon’s wilderness hero against a well-funded political opposition and various pro-development factions that are inspired by the region’s potential for growth, rather than the preservation of endangered species and the last free-flowing river in New Mexico.
Visitors to Silver City can call High-Lonesome Books, (505)388-3763, for directions to the publishing homestead and showroom and to meet the author himself (“he’s out back milking the goat”) or visit their web site at www.highlonesomebooks.com