The Smithsonian could be described as the Museum Of America, spread over many museums and institutions. The Smithsonian recognised skateboarding as unique among other physical or athletic activity as it was largely invented by youth, and as a result Betsy Gordon and Jane Rogers began the skateboarding collection, which as of 2022 numbers over 600 objects. The first of these were donated by George Powell and C.R. Stecyk in 1987.
Four Wheels And A Board tells the American history of skateboarding through this collection in a thoroughly inclusive and diverse chronological story, making sure to give voices to many who have been overlooked too often. The list of contributors includes Salman Agah, Brian Anderson, Leo Baker, Ted Barrow, Cara-Beth Burnside, Skip Engblom, Eli Morgan Gesner, Mimi Knoop, Dan Mancina, Richard Novak, Alexis Sablone, Elissa Steamer, C.R. Stecyk and many more.
By its own admission the book is by no means exhaustive historial document, rather it chooses to tell the story of our culture through its own collection.
Hardcover with dust jacket, 240 pages, 28.5 x 23.5cm.
The best book about skateboarding written by a self confessed skate mom you could hope for. You can also hear an excellent interview with Betsy about the book on the Mostly Skateboarding podcast here.
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