By: Oren Arnold
Original Date: 1947 (Published) Riverside, California
Size of Original: 16.4 x 20.6 inches (41.7 x 52.3 cm)
This humorous satirical pictorial map of 1947, purposefully and humorously distorted, features a ‘Kissin’ Sun’ in the upper left quadrant shining down on a detailed depiction of the state of California, and its inhabitants’ perception of its size relative to the remaining contiguous states. Florida is colored black and festooned with images of swamps, rain, a death valley, and incongruously an Eskimo at its southernmost tip. The states to the north of Florida are shown as ‘Unexplored’, ‘Unimportant anyway, not in California’.
California is depicted as a veritable paradise for which has something to suit the taste of virtually anyone. The weatherman is shown as a winged angel presiding over the heavens. California is named as the capital of the universe, and the city limits of Los Angeles stretch around the entire nation. Four of the world’s finest harbors are on its shores.
The map is filled with images of Mexicans, Indians and Anglos, and shows rivers, lakes, harbors, landmarks, parks, recreational activities and local people.
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What can be referred to as modern cartography has been around for over 550 years. Throughout that time an enormous amount of new land was discovered, cities were founded while others perished. International trade and travel became the norm, political borders were ever-changing, and numerous wars were waged. With all that being said, hundreds of thousands of maps were created that show such events and episodes in time.
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