NASELLE - Southwest Washington author and historian Rex Ziak appeared on national TV last Thursday night.

His environmental efforts were featured on "American Story with Bob Dotson" on MSNBC.

Ziak, a historian, author, Emmy Award-winning cameraman and environmentalist, was previously featured on the Today show. Thursday's show was a roundup of segments featuring reporter Dotson's favorites.

Ziak was the first writer to fully highlight the stay of Lewis and Clark on the Washington bank of the Columbia before they overwintered at Fort Clatsop. His focus was on the 30 days between Nov. 7, 1805, and Dec. 7, 1805, a time when Clark's journal entries were vague and confusing. He researched the precise site of Dismal Nitch and other locations by going out in a canoe and checking on the locales. His findings were published in the Chinook Observer.

Ziak's resulting book was called "In Full View: A True and Accurate Account of Lewis and Clark's Arrival at the Pacific Ocean, and Their Search for a Winter Camp Along the Lower Columbia River."

His second book, which features many maps, is called "Lewis and Clark: Down and Up the Columbia River."

Dotson told The Daily Astorian last Wednesday that Ziak's story had special resonance with viewers because he described how things got done - thanks to power and money - but often the people behind the scenes who did the work didn't get the credit.

In the segment, Ziak describes how he battled the John Hancock Insurance Co. over some old-growth forest land on the Pacific Coast back in 1990, then took on the company a second time and also won his case.

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