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How The States Got Their Shapes

Author: Mr. Mark Stein
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 0061899860
Size: 34.20 MB
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Why does Oklahoma have that panhandle? Did someone make a mistake? We are so familiar with the map of the United States that our state borders seem as much a part of nature as mountains and rivers. Even the oddities—the entire state of Maryland(!)—have become so engrained that our map might as well be a giant jigsaw puzzle designed by Divine Providence. But that's where the real mystery begins. Every edge of the familiar wooden jigsaw pieces of our childhood represents a revealing moment of history and of, well, humans drawing lines in the sand. How the States Got Their Shapes is the first book to tackle why our state lines are where they are. Here are the stories behind the stories, right down to the tiny northward jog at the eastern end of Tennessee and the teeny-tiny (and little known) parts of Delaware that are not attached to Delaware but to New Jersey. How the States Got Their Shapes examines: Why West Virginia has a finger creeping up the side of Pennsylvania Why Michigan has an upper peninsula that isn't attached to Michigan Why some Hawaiian islands are not Hawaii Why Texas and California are so outsized, especially when so many Midwestern states are nearly identical in size Packed with fun oddities and trivia, this entertaining guide also reveals the major fault lines of American history, from ideological intrigues and religious intolerance to major territorial acquisitions. Adding the fresh lens of local geographic disputes, military skirmishes, and land grabs, Mark Stein shows how the seemingly haphazard puzzle pieces of our nation fit together perfectly.

How The States Got Their Shapes Too

Author: Mark Stein
Publisher: Smithsonian Institution
ISBN: 1588343154
Size: 58.97 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Was Roger Williams too pure for the Puritans, and what does that have to do with Rhode Island? Why did Augustine Herman take ten years to complete the map that established Delaware? How did Rocky Mountain rogues help create the state of Colorado? All this and more is explained in Mark Stein's new book. How the States Got Their Shapes Too follows How the States Got Their Shapes looks at American history through the lens of its borders, but, while How The States Got Their Shapes told us why, this book tells us who. This personal element in the boundary stories reveals how we today are like those who came before us, and how we differ, and most significantly: how their collective stories reveal not only an historical arc but, as importantly, the often overlooked human dimension in that arc that leads to the nation we are today. The people featured in How the States Got Their Shapes Too lived from the colonial era right up to the present. They include African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanics, women, and of course, white men. Some are famous, such as Thomas Jefferson, John Quincy Adams, and Daniel Webster. Some are not, such as Bernard Berry, Clarina Nichols, and Robert Steele. And some are names many of us know but don't really know exactly what they did, such as Ethan Allen (who never made furniture, though he burned a good deal of it). In addition, How the States Got Their Shapes Too tells of individuals involved in the Almost States of America, places we sought to include but ultimately did not: Canada, the rest of Mexico (we did get half), Cuba, and, still an issue, Puerto Rico. Each chapter is largely driven by voices from the time, in the form of excerpts from congressional debates, newspapers, magazines, personal letters, and diaries. Told in Mark Stein's humorous voice, How the States Got Their Shapes Too is a historical journey unlike any other you've taken. The strangers you meet here had more on their minds than simple state lines, and this book makes for a great new way of seeing and understanding the United States. From the Hardcover edition.

American Panic

Author: Mark Stein
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
ISBN: 1137464178
Size: 32.39 MB
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In American Panic , New York Times bestselling author Mark Stein traces the history and consequences of American political panics through the years. Virtually every American, on one level or another, falls victim to the hype, intensity, and propaganda that accompanies political panic, regardless of their own personal affiliations. By highlighting the similarities between American political panics from the Salem witch hunt to present-day vehemence over issues such as Latino immigration, gay marriage, and the construction of mosques, Stein closely examines just what it is that causes us as a nation to overreact in the face of widespread and potentially profound change. This book also devotes chapters to African Americans, Native Americans, Catholics, Mormons, Jews, Chinese and Japanese peoples, Communists, Capitalists, women, and a highly turbulent but largely forgotten panic over Freemasons. Striking similarities in these diverse episodes are revealed in primary documents Stein has unearthed, in which statements from the past could easily be mistaken for statements today. As these similarities come to light, Stein reveals why some people become panicked over particular issues when others do not.

An Astounding Atlas Of Altered States

Author: Michael Trinklein
Publisher: Chartwell Books
ISBN: 0785834524
Size: 58.60 MB
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Fifty states is such a round, even, striking number. Everyone knows the fifty nifty United States-but what about the hundreds of other statehood proposals that never came to pass? An Astounding Atlas of Altered States is a tribute to such great unrealized dreams as West Florida, Hazard , Montezuma, Rough and Ready, and Yazoo. Some of these states came remarkably close to joining the union while others never had a chance. You could even be living in an area that once fancied itself a brand new state. Consider some of the following states that just didn't make the cut. Frontier legend Daniel Boone once proposed a state of Transylvania in the Appalachian wilderness (his plan was resurrected a few years later with the new name of Kentucky). Residents of Bucolic South Jersey wanted to secede from their urban north Jersey neighbors and form the fifty-first state. The Gold Rush Territory of Nataqua could have made a fine state-but since no women were willing to live there, settlers gave up and joined California. Long Island is bigger than Rhode Island and already had a larger population than twenty states, but the rest of New York refused to let it go. Texlahoma was an odd combination of forty six counties in Texas and another twenty-three from Oklahoma that nearly became America's Forty-ninth state. Each story offers a fascinating glimpse at the nation we might have become-along with plenty of absurd characters, bureaucratic red tape, and political gamesmanship. Accompanying these tales are beautifully rendered maps detailing the proposed state boundaries, plus images of real life artifacts and ephemera. Enjoy exploring this astounding atlas of lost, abandoned, and altered states.

Greetings From The 50 States

Author: Sheila Keenan
Publisher: Scholastic Nonfiction
ISBN:
Size: 40.26 MB
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The story behind each state's name and nickname is told in this informative book providing historical facts, fun trivia, and a helpful geography lesson.

Our States Have Crazy Shapes

Author: Lynn Garthwaite
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780997396706
Size: 17.32 MB
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These are the stories you didn't learn in American History class. The decisions about our borders and the tales of the people who made them are explained in anecdotal style to appeal to all ages. Where to divide two states? Why create a panhandle instead of a straight line? How did we end up with such odd shapes? Bonus chapters and simple maps.

The Scrambled States Of America Talent Show

Author: Laurie Keller
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company (BYR)
ISBN: 1429940115
Size: 44.60 MB
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Those wacky scrambled states are back. This time they've come together for a spectacular show featuring their many goofball talents. But just when Indiana (the director) is about to call SHOWTIME!, Georgia gets a bad case of stage fright and can't perform in her juggling act. Will the show go on, or will it be curtains? In this winning companion to The Scrambled States of America, young readers will revel in the madcap adventure and silly antics all while learning interesting facts about states and geography. This title has Common Core connections. The Scrambled States of America Talent Show is a 2009 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.

The Fabric Of America

Author: Andro Linklater
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 9780802718501
Size: 35.18 MB
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Linklater opens with America's greatest surveyor, Andrew Ellicott, measuring the contentious boundary between Pennsylvania and Virginia in the summer of 1784; and he ends standing at the yellow line dividing the United States and Mexico at Tijuana. In between, he chronicles the evolving shape of the nation, physically and psychologically. As Americans pushed westward in the course of the nineteenth century, the borders and boundaries established by surveyors like Ellicott created property, uniting people in a desire for the government and laws that would protect it. Challenging Frederick Jackson Turner's famed frontier thesis, Linklater argues that we are , thus, defined not by open spaces but by boundaries. "What Americanized the immigrants was not the frontier experience" Linklater writes, "but the fact that it took place inside the United States frontier." Those same borders had the ability to divide as well as unite, as the great battle over internal boundaries during the Civil War would show. By century's end, however, we were spreading U.S. power beyond our borders, an act that, seen through Linklater's eyes, offers an intriguing perspective on our role in the world today. Linklater's great achievement is to weave these provocative arguments into a dramatic storyline, wherein the actions of Ellicott, Thomas Jefferson, the treasonous general James Wilkinson, Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas, and numerous hitherto invisible settlers, all illuminate the shaping of the nation. This brilliant book will alter forever readers' perception of America and what it means to be an American.

Measuring America

Author: Andro Linklater
Publisher: Plume Books
ISBN: 9780452284593
Size: 23.31 MB
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A thought-provoking history of America's system of measurement explains how, following the American Revolution, a single system of weights and measures, the American Customary System, was developed in order to help survey and map out the vast lands west of the Ohio River and examines the impact of the system on American history and culture. Reprint.

Vice Capades

Author: Mark Stein
Publisher: U of Nebraska Press
ISBN: 1612349277
Size: 76.36 MB
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From outlawing bowling in colonial America to regulating violent video games and synthetic drugs today, Mark Stein's Vice Capades examines the nation's relationship with the actions, attitudes, and antics that have defined morality. This humorous and quirky history reveals that our views of vice are formed not merely by morals but by power. While laws against nude dancing have become less restrictive, laws restricting sexual harassment have been enacted. While marijuana is no longer illegal everywhere, restrictive laws have been enacted against cigarettes. Stein examines this nation's inconsistent moral compass and how the powers-that-be in each era determine what is or is not deemed a vice. From the Puritans who founded Massachusetts with unyielding, biblically based laws to those modern purveyors of morality who currently campaign against video game violence, Vice Capades looks at the American history we all know from a fresh and exciting perspective and shows how vice has shaped our nation, sometimes without us even knowing it.