This is a delightful bird’s-eye-view of the Bay Area at the end of World War II. The view is centered on the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco Bay. The perspective looks east past Mt. Diablo, and runs north past Napa and Sonoma and south to Santa Cruz and Gilroy.
What makes this view especially interesting among mid-20th century works that we have seen is a color-coded key system illustrating different economic and demographic sectors of the Bay Area: recreational, industrial, agricultural, and residential.
Recreational: this zone is found mostly as a strip along the coast, including fishing on the Russian River, hiking on Mt. Tamalpais in Marin County, joyriding Skyline Boulevard, visiting the Big Basin redwoods, or sunbathing in Santa Cruz.
Industrial: it is interesting to see this zone as a band around San Francisco Bay itself, in an era before much of its coastline has become protected and rehabilitated. It includes since closed ship yards, navy bases, and air fields.
Agricultural: northern California’s extensive agricultural lands and products are highlighted, from the vineyards of the North Bay to coastal artichokes to South Bay orchards to the prodigious Central Valley.
Residential: a feature of note in this sector are the Bay Area’s famous universities, including Berkeley, Stanford, and Santa Clara.
The map offers a splendid variety of illustrations: humorous, informative, and historical. From a San Francisco cable car, to Jack London’s Sonoma home, to a large galleon marking Drake’s supposed landing in 1579, this is a really cool piece.
Published by L. I. P. & B. A. Union label.