National Geographic : 1976 Jul
WHEN I FIRST SAW the unique and splendid satellite portrait of the 48 states that accompanies this Bicen tennial issue, I found myself absorbed in its detail-the clean-cut filigree of Lake Powell and the Grand Canyon; the undulating veins of the Missouri and Mississippi; the gentle folds of the Appalachians. Yet there is an even larger picture, an even more compelling one. For this land of endless diversity, of city, forest, field, plain, river, and mountain, of complex ethnic differences, of goals and purposes as various as our peo ple, is as the Founding Fathers had hoped: E pluribus unum-out of many, one. Despite the grave unfinished business of so ciety, we are a free and vital people. We can all recite the litany of our problems, from that of energy onward, but this seems a proper time to count our blessings, one of which has always been this magnificent land itself. We at the Geographic decided that The Land was at the heart of the matter in this July of 1976-the land and how our people have used, often abused, often cherished, often ex ploited, and often fought over it. The table of contents to the right reveals how we developed this idea-from attitudes toward the land as it once was to a visionary's idea of "land" as it may exist in a future space colony. The unifying theme for the issue, as it is for the country, is the realization that the system, somehow, works, that great things are possible when men are free and determined to make them so. Emerson once wrote that the true test of civilization was not the cities and crops it produced, but the kind of man it turned out. On this 200th anniversary ofthe United States, we can take a large measure of pride in the fact that we are still willing to labor for an ideal-that our land should be as rich and unique a heritage for our great-great-grand children as it has been for us. /^^y -Z NATIONAL THENATIONALGEOGRAPHICMAGAZINEVOL. 150, NO. I COPYRIGHT© 1976 BYNATIONALGEOGRAPHICSOCIETY WASHINGTON,D.C. INTERNATIONALCOPYRIGHTSECURED July 1976 THIS LAND OF OURS A Photographic Portfolio 2 The majesty of our land as it was and still is. A First American's View 13 N. Scott Momaday, a Kiowa Indian, reflects on his people's relationship to their land. How Are We Using Our Land? 20 No greater dilemma faces today's Americans than the problem of surviving-staying warm, getting to work, having enough to eat without destroying their land in the process. Peter T. White and Emory Kristof report on where we stand in this Bicentennial year. Five Noted Thinkers Explore the Future 68 Where will we be when this century ends? What does the 21st century hold in store? The Next Frontier? 76 Isaac Asimov imagines a visit to space colony L-5 in A.D. 2026. Paintings by Pierre Mion. George Washington: The Man Behind the Myths 90 Howard La Fay and Ted Spiegel discover a warmly human figure beneath the formal portraits and hallowed tales of our first President. Kansas City, Heartland U.S.A. 112 Rowe Findley goes home again, andfinds this sprawling, energetic metropolis still fueled by pioneer optimism. Photographsby Ted Spiegel. Revolutionary View of the 48 States 140 Barry C. Bishop tells how Landsat made the coast-to-coast color mosaic, Portrait U.S .A ., that accompanies this issue. Breakthrough in Wildlife Studies 148 John Craigheadharnesses Landsat's amazing technology to a continuing study of the imperiled grizzly bear. COVER: Living symbol of our land, a bald eagle, photographedby Jeff Foott.