While the book is rooted in the 1910 fires in the Rocky Mountains it does discuss lakes states fires of that year as well. (P. 71 ff. & p. 228 ff.) The thesis of the book is that the massive fires of 1910 were the catalyst for the U.S. Forest Service policy of total fire suppression for years following. Pyne gives an excellent synopsis of the development of that policy (without once mentioning Smokey the Bear) and the shift away from it which did not begin until the late 1930s.