Saturday, August 2, 2014

Where the People Are

I enjoy studying the highly detailed United States Department of the Interior Geological survey 1:24,000 topographic maps of my area of rural Missouri, where towns are tiny and most of the map area is green, indicating forests--and sprinkled on the maps, often in the middle of geological noplaces, are little black squares with crosses on top, along with the name of a church. The maps do show street names, and creek and park names. But in terms of buildings, only churches and schools get their individual names on these official U.S. maps. City halls and post offices aren't named or noted: only churches and schools, as if this were 1850 or something. I asked a friend what he thought of this and he said, "Churches and schools are on maps because that's where the people are who will help you." This is Catawissa Union Protestant Church, built about 1914. Summer is the best time to photograph churches.

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