California History

California History - California Geography The land surface...

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1 California Geography The land surface of California covers almost 100 million acres. It's the third largest of the states; only Alaska and Texas are larger. Within this vast area are a greater range of landforms, a greater variety of habitats, and more species of plants and animals than in any area of comparable size in all of North America. California Coast The coastline of California stretches for 1,264 miles from the Oregon border in the north to Mexico in the south. Some of the most breathtaking scenery in all of California lies along the Pacific coast. Standing alone on the spectacular coast of the Monterey peninsula, this windswept Monterey cypress has long been a favorite subject for artists and photographers. More than half of California's people reside in the coastal region. Most live in major cities that grew up around harbors at San Francisco Bay, San Diego Bay, and the Los Angeles Basin. Los Angeles Basin The Los Angeles Basin is the largest lowland area in California that directly fronts the ocean. Long the home of the Tongva people, settlement of the basin grew rapidly in the late nineteenth century. During the boom of the 1880s, the population of Los Angeles swelled from 11,000 to 50,000. Construction of a huge breakwater along the harbor at San Pedro began in 1899 and was later extended to protect the combined harbors of San Pedro and Long Beach. In 1994 this bustling port overtook New York as America's premier gateway for foreign trade. San Diego Bay A variety of Yuman-speaking people have lived for thousands of years around the shores of San Diego Bay. European settlement began in 1769 with the arrival of the first Spanish missionaries. The bay was seized by United States Marines during the Mexican-American War in 1846-1848. Development of the area proceeded slowly throughout the later nineteenth century. The coming of the Santa Fe railroad in 1885 spurred population growth as did the establishment of major army and navy bases during World War I. San Diego today has the largest concentration of military personnel of any city in the nation. San Francisco Bay San Francisco Bay, one of the finest natural harbors in the world, covers some 450 square miles. It is two hundred feet deep at some points, but about two-thirds is less than twelve feet deep. The bay region, the only real break in the coastal mountains, is the ancestral homeland of the Ohlone and Coast Miwok Indians. It became the gateway for newcomers heading to the state's interior in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Tourism today is San Francisco's leading industry. Mountains of California Mountains cover most of the surface of California. The various ranges tended to isolate the diverse Native American cultures that flourished within the present boundaries of the state. The mountains also were formidable barriers during the early decades of European American exploration and settlement. Mount Whitney, the highest point in the United States outside Alaska, rises to a majestic 14,495 feet
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This note was uploaded on 05/12/2011 for the course TED 406 taught by Professor Espisito during the Spring '11 term at CSU Dominguez Hills.

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California History - California Geography The land surface...

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