Introduction
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1 Introduction 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 in relationship to each other, the maps documented in this book reveal the ways in which Arizona was imagined and promoted during its first half-century of statehood. Chapter 1 introduces the ways in which cartographic illustration helped to construct a picture of the wonderlands of the American West during the twentieth century. It explores the definition of “cartographs” and their nature as ephemeral documents; it also outlines some of the uniquely American cartographic practices that contribute to their visual identity. Chapter 2 offers a brief chronological overview of cartographic illustrations of Arizona. Many image types and pictorial strategies exist in popular, illustrated maps. Far from being monolithic, the category is very diverse. It can be all too easy to overlook popular images, such as the cartographic illustrations that are the focus of this book, as ancillary to written accounts or as mere decoration. This chapter narrates Arizona’s first fifty years of statehood through its cartographic illustrations, emphasizing the images themselves. With a brief historical overview in place, the remainder of this book focuses on the cultural and representational work done by cartographic illustrations—both individually and in relationship to one another over time. Chapter 3 explores the roles of tourists, map users, and map-makers as they are visualized on Arizona cartographs. The audiences for cartographic illustration often appeared within the cartographs themselves, as tourists who drank in majestic scenery, roughed it in the wild, and otherwise consumed Arizona’s tourist landscapes. Occasionally, the maker of a cartograph would appear within the image, busily constructing a map of the pictured place. Even when not visible 2  •  Mapping Wonderlands within the picture plane, traces of the map-maker’s presence remain. By acting out carefully selected roles, the characters pictured in cartographs participated in a constructed narrative of the landscape, reinforcing the identity of the place in which they appeared. Chapter 4 discusses the ways in which illustrated maps of Arizona rewrite time in favor of a romantic and indistinct past. First, this chapter considers the ways in which historicist or backward-looking styles influenced the visual connotations of illustrated maps. Next, it discusses compressed historical narratives, examining maps that posited a centuries-long yet simultaneously occurring Arizona history. In contrast to historical narratives, this chapter then explores completely ahistorical representations of a timeless Arizona landscape. Finally, instances of Arizona maps that truncate history are documented, ending the state’s historical narrative well before the copyright date of the image itself. Chapter 5 considers maps that are concerned with a crowded Arizona landscape . While many parts of Arizona remained remote and difficult to reach well into the twentieth century, maps for tourists often concentrated on filling the landscape with a limitless supply of attractions and sites. By picturing Arizona as an overflowing, crowded place, the maps invited tourists to think of the state as metropolitan, easily navigable, and full of exciting recreational opportunities. Additionally, the ways in which pictorial maps established an historical context for Arizona’s transportation networks are discussed. A state crowded with tourist sites required a landscape crowded with roads, and illustrated maps of Arizona were quick to provide evidence of well-maintained roads. Chapter 6 documents varying narratives connected to the natural and built landscape of Arizona. It first explores the garden of Arizona—a narrative trope centered on verdant agricultural fields, lush foliage, and an ever-present supply of water in the desert. The chapter then probes the opposing theme of the American Sahara. In contrast to the popular cartographic motif of Arizona as a garden, the motif of Arizona as an alien desert offered a less comfortable (and less prevalent) picture of landscape. Finally, chapter 6 explores how illustrated maps pictured Arizona as a metropolitan center. Towering skylines, bustling cities, and signs of technological progress typify these images. Chapter 7 considers maps that picture Arizona as a culturally exotic locale. Early Spanish exploration and Native American civilization were the most common ways of writing local color onto the Arizona landscape. Spanish architecture and the missionary efforts of Father Kino found their way into numerous illustrated maps of Arizona. Some even focused exclusively on these themes. Native American culture proved similarly popular, with most maps...


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