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Item #: ANAM
ACCIDENTS IN AMERICAN MOUNTAINEERING: HISTORY
By American Alpine Club
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1948 was the first issue of Accidents in American Mountaineering, the report of the previous year's mountaineering accidents by the Safety Committee of the American Alpine Club and later, the Alpine Club of Canada.  

The yearly book on climbing accidents in the US and Canada did not start out as a separate book as we know it today. As climbing started its climb from being an invisible sport that was known and followed by a few dozen, perhaps a few hundred people, the thousands of men who were trained as climbers in the 10th Mt Division during WW2 started climbing and teaching their friends. However, many other people also started climbing without  knowing how to climb safely, and in 1947 there started to be what seemed a torrent of deaths in the mountains. 

The members of the American Alpine Club felt that they had a responsibility help reduce all those deaths, by spreading knowledge of what went wrong on each climb, and analyzing what could have prevented the mishaps. 

Initially the club wrote an article in the yearly journal about this new problem. It also became obvious that to spread the word the accident article could be reprinted  at low cost and made available to the climbing community. That is what caused the creation of the yearly report we now know as Accidents in American Climbing, and for a while Accidents in North American Mountaineering. 

This pamphlet is the initial manifestation of the AAC doing its part in making climbing safer.  The reprints continued, and then was broken off as the stand alone booklet we have today. The booklet's cover title initially varied, such as  ALPINE ACCIDENTS and some others. Luckily it settled down to what we know.  A few years ago the nature of climbing had changed so much, with millions of people rock climbing in gyms, and rock climbing and sport climbing outdoors at a high standard, with no desire to do multi day wilderness climbs, that the word Mountaineering was deleted and Climbing was substituted.

This is the chronology of the Accidents booklet and its name:

1948   Mountaineering Safety

1949   Safety In The Mountains

1950   Safety and the Climber

1951   Alpine Accidents

1952-1960   Accidents in American Mountaineering

1997   Accidents in Canadian Mountaineering (1997 only)

1961-2015   Accidents in North American Mountaineering

2016- to date    Accidents in North American Climbing




 



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