Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Goins, Goble & Anderson: "HISTORICAL ATLAS OF OKLAHOMA", 4th edition

[ Historical Atlas of Oklahoma, 4th ed. (pb) by Charles Robert Goins & Danney Goble, maps by James H. Anderson (University of Oklahoma Press, 2012). Softcover, color maps, photos, bibliography, index. 309 pp. ISBN:978-0-8061-3483-3  $29.95 ]

The 4th edition of the Historical Atlas of Oklahoma, newly released in paperback (the hardcover was published in 2006), is the result of four decades of continuous updating and topical expansion. In addition to James Anderson's 170 color maps, and dozens more charts and tables, new to this edition are sections on ethnic and women's history, as well as a register of artists associated with the state. Joining general editors Goins and Goble, are a host of other contributors applying their expertise in the social and natural sciences.  Subjects are generally accorded two pages, with the map image (or images) on the right, faced by a page length explanatory essay located opposite.

Countless topics are presented in the atlas, and these are grouped into six parts.  Part I deals with the geology, topography, weather, vegetation, and natural resources (oil, gas, minerals) of the state.  Maps associated with the thousands of years of Oklahoma settlement and exploration comprise Part II.   III mainly addresses the U.S. government's formation of the Indian Territory and their forced resettlement of various tribes there. Emigration routes, roads, trails, forts, camps, are located here, as well as missions and schools.  The Civil War years lie in this section, but the entire period is only covered by a single map with dots denoting significant sites. Coverage of battles, of which there were many, is limited to a short series of capsule descriptions corresponding to the site labels. Considering how important, and in many ways devastating, the war was to the Indian Territory's population, increased coverage in future editions is warranted. Part IV takes the territory to statehood, tracing cattle trails, the latest tribal land allotments, ethnic settlement, and railroads. Issues of early statehood (e.g. among them farming, political boundaries and movements, racial conflicts, and transportation) appear in Part V, with the final section taking the reader to the present using data from the most recent census. Population changes, transportation networks, political districts, education, parks, architecture, and the arts are all found in Part VI.

The book itself is of fine material quality, its thick, glossy paper stock an excellent medium for presenting the book's range of full color maps and illustrations. While the atlas is perhaps most useful for those concerned with more recent history, anyone with an abiding interest in the natural and human history of Oklahoma will want to pick up a copy of this new edition of the Historical Atlas of Oklahoma.

More CWBA reviews of UO Press titles:
* George Crook: From the Redwoods to Appomattox
* Violent Encounters: Interviews on Western Massacres
* A Perfect Gibraltar: The Battle for Monterrey, Mexico, 1846
* Patrick Connor's War: The 1865 Powder River Indian Expedition (Arthur H. Clark)
* Texas: A Historical Atlas
* Civil War Arkansas 1863: The Battle for a State
* Jayhawkers: The Civil War Brigade of James Henry Lane
* Powder River Odyssey: Nelson Cole's Western Campaign of 1865 the Journals of Lyman G. Bennett and Other Eyewitness Accounts (Arthur H. Clark)
* Three Days in the Shenandoah: Stonewall Jackson at Front Royal and Winchester
* The Uncivil War: Irregular Warfare In The Upper South, 1861-1865
* The Civil War in Arizona: The Story of the California Volunteers, 1861-1865

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