"To think like an environmental lawyer" : making American environmental law throughout the postwar era -- Seed-time : planting environmental law in the postwar years -- Fertilization : environmental lawmaking in the postwar administrative state -- Harvest home : environmental lawmaking and postwar federalism -- The people out of doors : popularizing postwar environmental law -- Across the new frontier : nationalizing environmental law -- From the files of Bruce Bowler, postwar environmental lawyer -- "A field so varied and rapidly changing" : American law schools discover environmental law. "Most Americans - even environmentalists - date the emergence of laws protecting nature to the early 1970s. But Karl Boyd Brooks shows that, far from being a product of that activist decade, American environmental law emerged well before the first Earth Day, often in unexpected places far from Capitol Hill." "Before Earth Day reveals the new strategies and efforts by which the unceasing process of legal change created environmental law. And through real world examples, Brooks demonstrates that key changes in property, procedure, contract, and other legal rules in those early years stimulated the growth of national environmental laws." "Before Earth Day describes nothing less than an entirely new way of thinking, as environmental law emerged from local jurisdictions to reshape national agendas, firing the popular imagination and only then remodeling law school curricula. A long-needed corrective to standard political and legal history, it demonstrates both the longstanding environmental concerns of Americans and the resilience of law."--BOOK JACKET.