State of California, an impressive wall map printed in 1955 by the U.S. Geological Survey, delivers a stunning shaded topographical relief of the Golden State. This visually engaging representation embodies the rich diversity of the state's geography, a realm where the highest and lowest points of the contiguous United States coexist.
With a nod to the modern geographical science of the mid-20th century, the map provides a detailed survey of the state's physical geography. Mountain ranges, rivers, lakes, and even glaciers are meticulously represented, revealing the variety and complexity of the state's natural landscape. Simultaneously, the map showcases offshore data, offering insights into the vast offshore canyons and plateaus that form an integral part of California's geographic identity.
Beyond its physical contours, the map skillfully delineates the human geography of California. It employs a population key to indicate towns and cities of varying sizes, from metropolises of over 100,000 inhabitants to smaller locales of fewer than 1,000. County lines and county seats, including the state capital, Sacramento, are also designated, revealing the administrative division of the state.
Moreover, the State of California map stands as a testament to collaborative cartography. Data from various federal departments—the U.S. Department of the Army, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and more—contribute to its comprehensive depiction. The map thus serves as a snapshot of California in 1955, capturing its diverse landscapes and human settlements with remarkable detail and precision.