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Arcadia Publishing.

Arcadia Publishing

420 Wando Park Blvd., Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

$19.99 Each

Don't expect weighty historical background in these 'Images of America' series additions: they are lovely photo-based local coverages of California gleaned from both archives and personal collections and the images are the basis for discussions of changes and events. OLD SACRAMENTO AND DOWNTOWN (0738531235) surveys the evolution of Sacramento using a team approach to culling vintage photos from the Sacramento Archives and Museum Collection Center and the Historic Old Sacramento Foundation. This mix of resources provides an excellent survey of the city's many changes and influences. The Bolinas Museum and the Stinson Beach Historical Society's BOLINAS AND STINSON BEACH (0738528951) deserves ongoing recommendation as an excellent overview of two small nearby towns and the body of water which both separates and links them. It's an isolated, lesser-known part of West Marin which rarely receives its own attention, making this a fine treasure for any who know the town. Bunny Gillespie's DALY CITY (07385328676) tells of a suburb of San Francisco which was built along the road which connected all the Spanish Missions in California, and today houses its own industrial and residential strengths. While it's always been cosmopolitan, it's also often been seen only in light of being a poor relation to San Francisco's glitter, so a book on its own from the official historian for the city is a welcome coverage. Philip Pezzaglia's RIO VISTA (0738530700) surveys a small town with a huge wharf which once welcomed steamers moving between Sacramento and San Francisco. While this era is long gone and changes have diminished the wharf's importance in Rio Vista's growth, today it's a notable agricultural community that continues to grow. Lorri Ungaretti's SAN FRANCISCO'S SUNSET DISTRICT (0738528625) also deserves repeated mention for its outstanding gathering of vintage photos compiled by a Sunset historian and tour guide. Current residents may recognize little of the old Sunset look as featured in these vintage photos, which provide an exciting history of the neighborhood in its early days. Jacqueline Proctor's SAN FRANCISCO'S WEST OF TWIN PEAKS (0738546607) tells of a district which receives much tourist acclaim, but relatively little background history. It began as part of Rancho San Miguel and was one of the last city districts to be developed: chapters discuss architectural, social and historical influence and gather vintage photos not just from historical archives, but from many a personal collection of longtime residents. Greg Gaar and Ryder W. Miller's SAN FRANCISCO: A NATURAL HISTORY (0738529877) comes from two San Francisco historians dedicated to showing the original nature and natural areas which made up the city's geography. Since most city histories, if not all, exclusively cover urban development, it's a pleasure to see a different approach which considers the city's evolving natural history and landscape changes--including ponds and parklands filled in decades ago. All are essential adds to any comprehensive California history collection.
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Title Annotation:Old Sacramento and Downtown; Bolinas and Stinson Beach; Daly City; Rio Vista; San Francisco's Sunset District; San Francisco's West of Twin Peaks; San Francisco: A Natural History
Publication:California Bookwatch
Article Type:Book review
Date:Oct 1, 2006
Previous Article:Soul of the Grid.
Next Article:Webster's New Explorer Spanish-English Dictionary.

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