Patterns on the Land: Geographical, Historical, and Political Maps of California

Patterns on the Land: Geographical, Historical, and Political Maps of California

Patterns on the Land: Geographical, Historical, and Political Maps of California

Patterns on the Land: Geographical, Historical, and Political Maps of California

Excerpt

There are patterns on the land in California, patterns which become discernible when the state is viewed as a whole, or when segments of the state are examined in detail. The individual must free himself from his immediate surroundings in order to see them. From the top of a high mountain or from the window of an airplane the apparent unsystematic arrangement of earth features begins to take on new meaning. Highways and rivers become lines on the land; houses agglomerate into settlements; and farms become agricultural regions.

The mosaic of natural and manmade features which comprise the California landscape is graphically portrayed in PATTERNS ON THE LAND. On occasion the reader views the state as it might be interpreted from a platform located some distance in space. At other times he is moved so close to the earth that only a small portion of California can be seen. Some elements have been mapped which cannot be seen at all, either because they occurred in the past, as in the case of pioneer movements, or because they reflect the statistical summary of a relatively long period of time, e.g., maps of average annual temperature and precipitation. In some cases the distributions have been superimposed on a relief base; in others they have not. Whatever base, scale and degree of generalization have been incorporated into individual maps, the atlas has been structured so that within any given series the reader may correlate data from two or more maps.

The atlas is organized to give the reader a systematic view of California's many landscape variations. The main body of the atlas is divided into four parts. Part I contains maps portraying various aspects of the natural environment. Photographs and textual material help the reader to understand the landforms, cli-

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