Book Review: See America, A Celebration of Our National Parks and Treasured Sites, pp 172

Lincoln Memorial

Artist: Luis Prado
Lincoln Memorial

To celebrate the 100th birthday of the national parks, the Creative Action Network (CAN) produced “See America,” a collection of contemporary national park posters inspired by the Works Progress Administration (WPA). The hardcover book is the brainchild of CAN co-founders Aaron-Perry-Zucker and Max Slavkin, who combined their appreciation of the iconic travel posters created by WPA artists during the Great Depression with their own passion for fostering creative communities.

 

“See America” features 75 colorful posters of national parks and monuments from all 50 states along with thumbnail maps and little-known gems about each park’s history and unique character.

Artist: Roberlan Borges
Haleakalā National Park

For example, public demand to memorialize President Lincoln began immediately after his assassination, yet it took 50 years of fundraising and Congressional debate for construction on the Lincoln Memorial National Monument to begin. It opened in 1911. Haleakala National Park, established in 1916, is home to more endangered species than any other park in the National Park Service. Joshua Tree National Park, founded as national monument in 1936, exists today thanks to a tenacious conservationist, Minerva Hamilton Hoyt, who appealed to FDR to establish a desert national monument. Now a national park, Joshua Tree harbors 800 species.

CAN is an online community of more than  ten thousand graphic artists dedicated to using their creativity to raise awareness of social causes. Some 750 artists submitted more than a thousand poster designs for the “See America” project. Artists are paid for the sale their posters, which are displayed on CAN’s website. Proceeds also benefit the National Parks Conservation Association. Learn more at Seeamericaproject.com

Artist: Jon Cain
Great Smoky Mountains

As our thanks for your support: Donate $100 or more to the Living New Deal and receive a copy of “See America” as our gift to you. Donations to the Living New Deal are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law.

Susan Ives is communications director for the Living New Deal and editor of the Living New Deal newsletter.

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New Deal Maps

Check out our latest map and guide to the work of the New Deal in Washington, D.C. It includes 500 New Deal sites in the District alone, highlighting 34 notable sites, and includes an inset map of the area around the National Mall which can be used for self-guided walking tours.

Take a look at our previous guides, equally comprehensive, covering key New Deal sites in San Francisco and New York City.