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Texas: A Historical Atlas Hardcover – April 30, 2010

16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

A. Ray Stephens is retired as Professor of History at the University of North Texas, Denton, and Director of the Texas History Institute. He is coauthor (with William M. Holmes) of the Historical Atlas of Texas. Carol Zuber-Mallison is an award-winning freelance artist specializing in maps and informational graphics. For 14 years she was an editor and artist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and the Dallas Morning News. She is also cartographer for the Texas Almanac.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Univ of Oklahoma Pr (Trd) (April 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806138734
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806138732
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 1.2 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #907,573 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By DickStanley. on May 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The colorful new atlas, which aims to supplant a popular one published in 1990 by the same author, seems to have it all. It's also prettier.

Step back through the decades and you see the strengths in its graphical presentations, the data often mapped by county. The dwindling of farms, from their peak in 1900 to the present paucity. The dramatic rise in urban populations and extension of the railroads---including a photo of a train crossing the dramatic Pecos High Bridge, built in 1882. Major aquifers, native-plant regions, and dates and locations of the worst tornadoes. Go back farther and, well, how about the distribution of slaves in 1850 and again in 1861? A lot fewer than you might think.

There are weaknesses. The modern distribution of cattle, of all things, notably does not include (the fact is noted but the reason left unstated), the numbers of cows in the miles-long industrial feedlots of the Panhandle.

As has been said, coffee-table books are supposed to be pretty and not controversial. By that measure it's not surprising the atlas is less informative the closer it gets to its publication date. For one, illegal immigration from Mexico (the politically-correct phrase "undocumented workers" is used) is dismissed as merely "producing much rhetoric." Hundreds of thousands of people a year swamping schools, emergency rooms and charities and increasing the danger on highways is more than rhetoric.

No, most of the strengths are in the past, with special maps and diagrams for Mexican Texas, the early explorers from 1519, the grants of the empresarios and major early roads, the Texas Revolution. The modern section is eclectic: mapping nuclear and coal-fired power plants, the lumber industry, distribution of major crops, colleges and universities, and ethnic and racial groups by county.

All-in-all, and despite the faults, an invaluable reference work. One only wonders why it's not published by a Texas press.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Janice K Hurst on January 18, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a Texan, I have to say that this is one of the most complete book on Texas I have found. It has everything: a little history, a lot of beautiful maps, topography , and pictures. You can't go wrong with this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By R. Justice on September 13, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Texas A Historical Atlas, by Ray Stephens, is an ideal "read" to achieve a comprehensive understanding of Texas under six flags. Professor Stephens is an experienced and expert college teacher, and this book is the seminal work of his distinguished career. By using the ever changing map of Texas to aid in telling the historical "story", Professor Stephens enables the reader to understand how geography was, is now, and will continue to be the determining factor in the destiny of Texas. People all over the world recognize the map of Texas when they can not recognize a map of France or Iran. This book will help you understand why.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jim w/ Amsoil on March 9, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you have people who like to argue with you about Texas history this is a great resource. A great book for students as well. It is something that you can reach back to for years to come. With so much false information out there this tends to set things straight. A very interesting and surprisingly complete research tool.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Need one for myself now. Many great historical maps showing places I have heard about from my grandparents and parents but are no longer around.
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This copy was for a gift. I am really thinking of just making it my loaner copy. First book I did not let taken from the house but since so many enjoying may make this available to borrow.
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By Lorrie Loy on February 12, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Huge, heavy and full of gorgeous maps. Not just a coffee table book and loaded with information on Texas. You cannot go wrong with this as a native Texan and for a Geography major.
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Precisely what my boyfriend wanted to research Texas History and at a much better price than our local bookstore.
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