Book Review: Historic Sites and Landmarks That Shaped America: From Acoma Pueblo to Ground Zero

Mike Toski


This new work explores 260 celebrated locations of historical import in the United States. A unique publication, the only similar undertaking in the recent past is Thomas W. Paradis’s The Illustrated Encyclopedia of American Landmarks (Lorenz 2011). This older Lorenz edition is not widely held in American academic or public libraries, focuses more on the visual, and also highlights seemingly less-compelling sites such as state capitol buildings, marketplaces, and warehouses. Newton-Matza’s book, on the other hand, hones in on places more widely acknowledged as historically significant, such as the Gateway Arch in St. Louis and the Grand Canyon. Other locations included here may be closely associated with major battles or well-known figures of the American past—US presidents, writers, and inventors, for example. The latter type of entry tends to be largely biographical (e.g., the Booker T. Washington National Monument in Virginia) while others focus chiefly on whatever significant event took place there, such as Woodstock or Ground Zero.

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