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I read a story in the '80s (it could have been early or late '80s) about a man who built a suspended animation machine as a form of time travel because he wanted to see the future in person. I think he was from the past (not contemporary) maybe 100 years ago. He had a kind of capsule or pod and when he woke up the first time he was in a forest, trees having grown around him. His first experience was only 100 or 200 years into the future. He had an adventure, then went back to the pod to go even further into the future. There was no possibility of his return to his own time.

I read the first chapter in a short story collection. The introduction to the story mentioned that it was an excerpt from a longer story, perhaps a novel. I liked what I had read so far and would have liked to have read the whole story had I had it.

It's definitely not H. G. Wells The Time Machine, because the protagonist doesn't actually travel through accelerated time, and is unconscious between episodes/chapters.

24

Sounds like "The Man Who Awoke" by Laurence Manning, a story serialized by Wonder Stories in 1933.

The main character just sleeps for ages in a bunker he built; when he awakes he lives an adventure or two on future Earth, then gets back into his bunker and sleeps on.
There's no way back as he only wins the passing of time on his body and doesn't travel through time.
His first adventure is in a forest.

Wikipedia has the novel summarized.

  • The synopsis on Wikipedia is not detailed enough for me to say it's definitely this story, but nothing disagrees with what I remember. I'll try to find a copy to verify it! – CJ Dennis Jan 29 at 13:37
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    The first part of the story was reprinted in Isaac Asmiov's Before the Golden Age: A Science Fiction Anthology of the 1930s, which fits perfectly as I read the first volume of The Golden Age of Science Fiction at around the same time. – CJ Dennis Jan 29 at 13:44
  • This was my first thought too. (though I did not remember the title) The thing I also remembered was I think each time he woke up, he needed medical assistance of the new time he was in to restore his health. (If I recall right he was not actually in suspension, just aging VERY VERY slowly. So when he woke, his body would be 30-40? years older than when he went to sleep.) – NJohnny Jan 29 at 23:45
  • @NJohnny I just finished reading the first part. He estimated he had aged one or two years when he woke up. The setup was familiar but not his first adventure. – CJ Dennis Jan 30 at 0:23
  • Sorry for the short answer but I'm relieved to see you made up for the lack of details. I was on time constraints and finding the novel was the primary goal. – Zab Zonk Jan 31 at 12:00

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