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Mapping Wonderlands

Illustrated Cartography of Arizona, 1912–1962

Dori Griffin

Publication Year: 2013

Though tourism now plays a recognized role in historical research and regional studies, the study of popular touristic images remains sidelined by chronological histories and objective statistics. Further, Arizona remains underexplored as an early twentieth-century tourism destination when compared with nearby California and New Mexico. With the notable exception of the Grand Canyon, little has been written about tourism in the early days of Arizona’s statehood.
Mapping Wonderlands fills part of this gap in existing regional studies by looking at early popular pictorial maps of Arizona. These cartographic representations of the state utilize formal mapmaking conventions to create a place-based state history. They introduce illustrations, unique naming conventions, and written narratives to create carefully visualized landscapes that emphasize the touristic aspects of Arizona.
Analyzing the visual culture of tourism in illuminating detail, this book documents how Arizona came to be identified as an appealing tourism destination. Providing a historically situated analysis, Dori Griffin draws on samples from a comprehensive collection of materials generated to promote tourism during Arizona’s first half-century of statehood. She investigates the relationship between natural and constructed landscapes, visual culture, and narratives of place. Featuring sixty-six examples of these aesthetically appealing maps, the book details how such maps offered tourists and other users a cohesive and storied image of the state. Using historical documentation and rhetorical analysis, this book combines visual design and historical narrative to reveal how early-twentieth-century mapmakers and map users collaborated to imagine Arizona as a tourist’s paradise.

Though tourism now plays a recognized role in historical research and regional studies, the study of popular touristic images remains sidelined by chronological histories and objective statistics. Further, Arizona remains underexplored as an early twentieth-century tourism destination when compared with nearby California and New Mexico. With the notable exception of the Grand Canyon, little has been written about tourism in the early days of Arizona’s statehood.
Mapping Wonderlands fills part of this gap in existing regional studies by looking at early popular pictorial maps of Arizona. These cartographic representations of the state utilize formal mapmaking conventions to create a place-based state history. They introduce illustrations, unique naming conventions, and written narratives to create carefully visualized landscapes that emphasize the touristic aspects of Arizona.
Analyzing the visual culture of tourism in illuminating detail, this book documents how Arizona came to be identified as an appealing tourism destination. Providing a historically situated analysis, Dori Griffin draws on samples from a comprehensive collection of materials generated to promote tourism during Arizona’s first half-century of statehood. She investigates the relationship between natural and constructed landscapes, visual culture, and narratives of place. Featuring sixty-six examples of these aesthetically appealing maps, the book details how such maps offered tourists and other users a cohesive and storied image of the state. Using historical documentation and rhetorical analysis, this book combines visual design and historical narrative to reveal how early-twentieth-century mapmakers and map users collaborated to imagine Arizona as a tourist’s paradise.

Published by: University of Arizona Press

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 2-5

Contents

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pp. v-7

List of Illustrations

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-13

This book began as a doctoral dissertation at Arizona State University. The members of my dissertation committee provided invaluable support and guidance as I worked through the material here for the first time. It was a privilege to work with such gifted scholars and practitioners. Thanks to Dr. Beverly Brandt, who is not only an extraordinary...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-3

How can popular, illustrated maps offer contemporary viewers insights into the cultural history and physical landscape of Arizona? This book approaches that question from multiple viewpoints, offering readers a chance to explore the landscape and history of Arizona from a fresh and highly visual perspective. When contextualized...

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1. Writing the Wonderlands of Arizona

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pp. 5-21

During the first half of the twentieth century, increasing numbers of American automotive tourists set out along the nation’s highways, traveling in order to engage the landscapes of their country and their history. Tourism in the West played an important role in the formation of a national American identity, and it helped individual tourists to define...

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2. Contextualizing Arizona’s Cartographic Illustrations, 1912–1962

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pp. 22-55

What is a cartographic illustration, and how can contemporary viewers understand the historical landscape more fully by learning to read the language of cartographic illustrations? The makers of cartographic illustrations have called their work by many names: cartographs, cartomaps, pic-tour maps, cartoon maps, picture maps, and illustrated...

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3. Adopted Identities: Map-makers, Map Users, and Illustrated Roles

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pp. 56-74

Both tourists and cartographic illustrators appear in cartographs of Arizona—the former much more frequently than the latter. Many cartographs depict tourists within the mapped spaces. For the vast majority of sightseeing maps, guidebook maps, and postcard maps, tourists are the intended user group. Cartographic illustrators often scatter...

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4. Rewriting Time: Illustrated Cartography and Arizona’s Temporal Landscape

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pp. 75-101

Many cartographic illustrations of Arizona edit chronology. They rewrite the temporal landscape through a variety of technical mechanisms and toward a variety of conceptual ends. This chapter explores the varying ways in which Arizona cartographs treat time, overdetermining the state’s landscape as a historical (i.e., noncontemporary) space...

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5. Crowded Spaces: “How We Filled in the Map”

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pp. 102-128

Unlike popular destinations in many other places, Arizona’s tourist wonderlands remained remote and difficult to reach well into the twentieth century. This chapter argues that cartographic illustrators faced particular challenges in depicting Arizona’s tourist landscapes favorably. Sparsely populated, largely rural, and easily perceived as “empty” to tourists accustomed to the greener...

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6. Cartographic Narratives of Place: Writing Stories onto Arizona Landscapes

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pp. 129-147

Cartographic illustrations of Arizona created specific, well-defined, place-based imaginaries for potential and actual tourists. The “imaginary” of a place consists of the accrued layers of cultural meaning that mask, embellish, or explain its observable physical characteristics. Often narrative in form, the imaginary offers a conceptual synthesis, a holistic and reductive frame for the tourist...

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7. Cartographic Narratives of Cultural Exoticism: Stories with Local Color

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pp. 148-179

The previous chapter discussed cartographic narratives constructed around place. This chapter shifts the focus from Arizona places to the “exotic” groups of people who inhabited those places. Colonial Spaniards and Native Americans dominate Arizona’s narratives of the exotic Other. Numerous maps depict Arizona as either a Spanish colony awash in golden stucco...

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Conclusion: Rereading Arizona as a Wonderland

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pp. 180-183

During Arizona’s first fifty years of statehood, from 1912 to 1962, cartographic illustrators imagined the state as a tourist’s wonderland. In so doing, they used a variety of visual and narrative strategies. Cartographic illustrators incorporated the formal image characteristics and cartographic conventions typical of their place and time. They developed and pictorialized...

Appendix: Popular Cartographers of Arizona, A Biographical Catalogue

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pp. 185-193

Notes

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pp. 195-212

Index

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pp. 213-218

About the Author

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pp. 219-233


E-ISBN-13: 9780816599912
E-ISBN-10: 0816599912
Print-ISBN-13: 9780816509324
Print-ISBN-10: 0816509328

Page Count: 232
Illustrations: 66 photos
Publication Year: 2013

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Subject Headings

  • Arizona -- Historical geography -- Maps.
  • Arizona -- Economic conditions -- Maps.
  • Arizona -- Social conditions -- Maps.
  • Arizona -- Maps.
  • Atlases. -- lcgft.
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