The award-winning book on the birth of modern skateboarding.
Over 1200 images and photographs illustrate this 912-page unprecedented work. A Secret History of the Ollie is the winner of six book awards, including three gold medals, and it was chosen as one of the Top 10 Photobooks of the Year by Mother Jones magazine. Regarded by many as "the bible of skateboarding," this is a book that should be in every home, school, and public library.
"When I saw the Ollie for the first time, I was like, "Good Lord, I have to do one of those!"…It was like seeing a man on the moon or something." — Chris Baucom
"At the California contests thieves frequently stole Alan Gelfand's shoes, not because of their monetary value, but because they believed he had magnets hidden in them. They thought if he didn't have his shoes, then he couldn't do an Ollie. They were wrong." — Dan Murray
MORE THAN JUST DOGTOWN
Make no mistake, the Z-Boys were an important part of the emerging American skate scene during the 1970s, but they weren't the only domain. In the state of California alone, besides Santa Monica and Venice, there were many other hot spots. Some of those places included San Diego, Upland, Santa Barbara, Ventura, Santa Cruz, Salt Creek, Vista, Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley, Oxnard, and San Francisco—all equally influential and significant for the skaters and innovations they delivered.
But far, far away from California, on the Gold Coast of Southern Florida, thousands of miles from the West Coast skateboard industry and media, there was another tale unfolding. More obscure and under the radar, the Florida scene would have a dramatic and immeasurable impact on skateboarding, allowing it to literally take flight. It all started with the invention of the Ollie, a magical no-hands aerial and the signature move that would forever change skating.
THE POP HEARD AROUND THE WORLD
Created in 1978, the Ollie, without a doubt, is the maneuver that changed skateboarding for all time. In A Secret History of the Ollie , author, photographer, and skater Craig B. Snyder follows this revolutionary no-handed skate trick from its humble beginnings in his hometown of Hollywood, Florida, to the present day in this new historical multi-volume work with an origin story as dramatic and magical as the move itself.
THE BIRTH OF MODERN SKATING
Illustrated in color throughout, A Secret History of the Ollie is not just the story of the Ollie, but a history of skateboarding like no other. Over 1200 images and photographs, many of which have never been published before, accompany 912 pages of some of the more crucial moments in skating history including the birth of the first aerials on land and in surfing.
— Betsy Gordon, curator of "Ramp It Up," Smithsonian Institution
—Michael Brooke, publisher of Concrete Wave Magazine and author of the books "Skate Legends" and "The Concrete Wave"
—Jack Smith, museum founder and director, and former publisher of The Skateboarder’s Journal
—Larry Balma, publisher of TransWorld Skateboarding magazine (1983-1996) and co-founder of Tracker Trucks (1975-present)
—Nezka Pfeifer, Curator, Sidewalk Surfing: The Art & Culture of Skateboarding, The Everhart Museum of Natural History, Science & Art
—Eastern Surf Magazine (ESM)
—David Lober, founder of Skaters Over 50, a Facebook group with over 30,000 members
—Iain Borden, author of “Skateboarding, Space and the City,” and Vice-Dean Education and Professor of Architecture and Urban Culture at The Bartlett, University College London (UCL)
— H. Michael Gelfand, James Madison University
—William H. Robertson, Ph.D., former pro skater, author of “Action Science: Relevant Teaching and Active Learning,” and associate professor in science and technology education at the University of Texas
—Ian Cadman, UK skater
—Bill Daniel, Texas filmmaker, artist, photographer, and skater
—Jim Evans, a.k.a. T.A.Z., painter, printmaker, and illustrator; creator of the original posters and ads for Cadillac Wheels
—Russ Howell, freestyle pioneer, former California World Champion, and the first professional skateboarder of the 1970s
—Kilwag, editor, Skate and Annoy
—Edie Robertson, one of the first female pros of the 1970s, original member of the Sims Skateboards team, and the first woman to perform a no-handed aerial on national television
—Phil Chiocchio, filmmaker, designer/builder/owner of Sensation Basin skatepark in Gainesville (1977-1982), and the first sponsor of Florida skateboard legend Rodney Mullen
—Mark Spindler, Space Coast surfer
"We are not makers of history. We are made by history."
— Martin Luther King, Jr.
“I believe that books, once they are written, have no need of their authors…If they have something to say, they will sooner or later find readers; if not, they won’t.”
“Cheat your landlord if you can and must, but do not try to shortchange the Muse. It cannot be done. You can’t fake quality any more than you can fake a good meal.”
—William S. Burroughs
Photo: Courtesy of Jonathan Utz.
Dimensions: 9.3 x 7 x 2.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 4.7 pounds
Printed in the U.S.A.
• TOP 10 PHOTOBOOKS Mother Jones
• BEST IN GENERAL TRADE ILLUSTRATED 58th Annu. New England Book Show, Boston
• GOLD MEDAL Foreword Reviews: Book of the Year Award in Sports
• BEST IN SPORTS
Independent Press Awards, New York, 2017
• BEST IN SPORTS
NYC Big Book Awards, New York, 2017
• GOLD MEDAL Independent Book Awards
• GOLD MEDAL FAPA President Book Awards