Barbara McMartin, 73, an Adirondack expert who wrote more than two dozen books on New York’s North Country, died Tuesday of cancer at her home on Canada Lake on the southern edge of Adirondack Park in Fulton County, N.Y.
A Vassar College graduate, McMartin earned a doctorate in mathematics from City University of New York in 1972, the same year she published her first Adirondack guidebook. The Johnstown, N.Y., native went on to write 25 books on the Adirondack Mountains in addition to numerous magazine and newspaper articles.
McMartin was widely respected by state agency officials and environmentalists alike for her knowledge of the Adirondacks, a 6-million-acre park made up of public and private land. Her knowledge of the region and its history was so deep that she was once called “the Rand McNally of upstate New York” by the New York Daily News.
An advocate of forest preservation, McMartin contributed policy initiatives to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation. She also served on numerous boards of Adirondack preservation groups.