Tuesday Evening Lecture: From Powell to Power: A Recounting of the First 100 River Runners through the Grand Canyon

Riordan Mansion State Historic Park

Tuesday, September 12, 2017   7:00 pm.

Presented by Tom Martin

A special presentation for Colorado River Days made possible by River Runners for Wilderness. Grand Canyon author Tom Martin will present a 50 minute behind the scenes look at Otis “Dock” Marston’s book “From Powell to Power: A Recounting of the First One Hundred River Runners Through Grand Canyon.”


Submarine Commander Marston first floated in a wooden boat thought Grand Canyon in 1942. Five years later, he started to write a history of river running in the Grand Canyon. What he thought would be a six month project in 1947 kept Dock busy over the next thirty years. Along the way Dock amassed a huge collection of first-person accounts of these river runners, from James White on a log raft in 1867 to the first Grand Canyon powerboat runs of 1949 through 1951. Marston’s book is unparalleled in the depth and breadth it brings to recounting the history of the first 100 river runners through the Grand Canyon.


This presentation includes historic film footage of Marston and other river runners from the early 1900s through 1960s. Martin will touch on who Dock Marston was, and look at some of the highlights of Marston’s recounting of the First 100. Copies of Marston’s book, along with Tom Martin’s Grand Canyon hiking and river running guides, will be available for purchase at this presentation. Proceeds of book sales at this event will benefit River Runners For Wilderness.