Daniel James Brown, author of “The Boys in the Boat,” will speak in Chimacum later this month.

Daniel James Brown, author of “The Boys in the Boat,” will speak in Chimacum later this month.

Author of ‘Boys in the Boat’ to speak in Chimacum

The book celebrates the 1936 U.S. men’s Olympic eight-oar rowing team and their triumph at Hitler’s Olympics.

CHIMACUM — Daniel James Brown, the author of “The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics,” will present the Jefferson County Library’s 2016 Huntingford Humanities Lecture at Chimacum High School on Oct. 27.

The lecture, which will be free and open to the public, will be at 7 p.m. in the auditorium at the school at 91 West Valley Road in Chimacum.

Written with a compelling and beautifully written narrative, “The Boys in the Boat” is a portrait of an era, a celebration of a historic achievement and a chronicle of one extraordinary young man’s personal quest — Joe Rantz, who left his hometown of Sequim in his teens.

The book celebrates the 1936 U.S. men’s Olympic eight-oar rowing team and their triumph at Hitler’s Olympics.

Along with Rantz, Gordon Adam, Chuck Day, Don Hume, George “Shorty” Hunt, Jim “Stub” McMillin, Bob Moch, Roger Morris and John White Jr. were the boys in the boat, the University of Washington’s 1936 crew, a team that transformed the sport and grabbed the attention of millions of Americans in the depths of the Depression.

In writing the story, Brown drew from the boys’ own diaries and journals, their photos and memories.

The sons of loggers, shipyard workers and farmers, the boys defeated rivals from eastern and British universities and, finally, the German crew rowing for Adolf Hitler in the Olympic Games in Berlin.

On the New York Times bestseller list for over two years, Brown’s book remains tops on the list for paperback nonfiction.

Rights to the book were purchased by The Weinstein Co. in 2011 for development as a feature film.

Brown said he fell in love with the written word when he was 5 and his mother first read “Danny and the Dinosaur” to him.

Since then, he has earned a bachelor’s in English from the University of California at Berkeley and a master’s in English from the University of California at Los Angeles.

He taught writing at San Jose State University and Stanford University, and has written two previous books: “Under a Flaming Sky: The Great Hinckley Firestorm of 1894,” published in 2006, and “The Indifferent Stars Above: The Harrowing Sage of a Donner Party Bride,” published in 2009.

He lives near Seattle with his wife and an assortment of cats, dogs, chickens and honeybees.

The Huntingford Humanities Lecture was established in 2001 in memory of Sara L. Huntingford, a longtime supporter of the Jefferson County Library at 620 Cedar Ave. in Port Hadlock. The library district was formed in 1978 due in part to her efforts.

For more information, see www.jclibrary.info or call 360-385-6544.

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