The Birth of City Planning in the United States, 1840-1917 (Creating the North American Landscape Series)

Overview

This long-awaited book by Jon A. Peterson presents a sweeping narrative history of the origins of city planning in the United States, from its nineteenth-century antecedents to its flowering in the early twentieth century. Deeply researched, well-written, and engaging, the text is supplemented by an outstanding selection of historic plans, illustrations, and photographs.

Topics covered in detail include the McMillan Plan for Washington, D.C. (the first comprehensive plan for an ...

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Overview

This long-awaited book by Jon A. Peterson presents a sweeping narrative history of the origins of city planning in the United States, from its nineteenth-century antecedents to its flowering in the early twentieth century. Deeply researched, well-written, and engaging, the text is supplemented by an outstanding selection of historic plans, illustrations, and photographs.

Topics covered in detail include the McMillan Plan for Washington, D.C. (the first comprehensive plan for an American city), the City Beautiful movement, the major planners—Daniel Burnham, Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., Charles Mulford Robinson, John Nolen, and others—who led the planning movement; the ascendancy of a generalist approach to the shaping of the physical city, the role of the Progressive Era reform, and the emergence of city planning as a novel field of public endeavor. This book will appeal to students and scholars in urban studies, community planning, American history (the Guilded Age and Progressive Era), American studies, architectural and landscape history, as well as environmental and planning history, including practicing professionals in related fields.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Journal of Planning Education and Research - Eugenie L. Birch
A masterpiece, impeccable in its research and brilliant in its interpretation... an authoritative reference for planning history and a basic resource for planning theory.
Planning Perspectives - John L. Hancock
Taken as a whole, this careful work should please anyone seeking both an aesthetic and social justice perspective. Scholars owe Jon Peterson many thanks for this definitive history of modern American city planning's birth in the Progressive Era.
Urban History - Steven J. Hoffman
Delightfully well written and soundly researched, The Birth of City Planning is essential reading for anyone wishing to gain insight into how we think about American cities.
Material Culture - Carlos Nunes Silva
An excellent piece of research and constitutes a significant contribution to the literature in this field.
Choice
In this clearly written, meticulously researched, and profusely illustrated monograph, Peterson describes the birth, growth, and decline of city planning in the US.
Journal of American History
No understanding of early twentieth-century political and cultural history will be complete without this thorough account of the Progressive Era's most visible legacy.
Environmental History
The rise of city planning in the United States was tied to several issues and movements that long have concerned historians of environmentalism. Peterson's outstanding account of the birth of city planning therefore ought to be part of all future discussions of environmental activism in the period before World War I.

— Adam Rome

Choice

In this clearly written, meticulously researched, and profusely illustrated monograph, Peterson describes the birth, growth, and decline of city planning in the US.

Journal of Planning Education and Research
A masterpiece, impeccable in its research and brilliant in its interpretation... an authoritative reference for planning history and a basic resource for planning theory.

— Eugenie L. Birch

Planning Perspectives
Taken as a whole, this careful work should please anyone seeking both an aesthetic and social justice perspective. Scholars owe Jon Peterson many thanks for this definitive history of modern American city planning's birth in the Progressive Era.

— John L. Hancock

Urban History
Delightfully well written and soundly researched, The Birth of City Planning is essential reading for anyone wishing to gain insight into how we think about American cities.

— Steven J. Hoffman

Material Culture
An excellent piece of research and constitutes a significant contribution to the literature in this field.

— Carlos Nunes Silva

History: Reviews of New Books
A terrific book, absolutely essential reading for students and scholars of U.S. planning, urban, and Progressive Era history.

— Christopher Silver

Environmental History - Adam Rome
The rise of city planning in the United States was tied to several issues and movements that long have concerned historians of environmentalism. Peterson's outstanding account of the birth of city planning therefore ought to be part of all future discussions of environmental activism in the period before World War I.
History: Reviews of New Books - Christopher Silver
A terrific book, absolutely essential reading for students and scholars of U.S. planning, urban, and Progressive Era history.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801872105
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/2003
  • Series: Creating the North American Landscape Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 431
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 7.10 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Jon A. Peterson is a professor of history at Queens College, City University of New York.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Table of Contents

Contents:

1 Introduction: Urban Planning in the American PastPART I Antecedents of City Planning

2 Sanitary Reform and Landscape Values, 1840–1900

3 Civic Art, 1890–1900PART II The Birth of an Ideal

4 Tha Nation's First Comprehensive City Plan, 1900–1902

5 The Origins of the City Beautiful, 1897–1902

6 The Birth of the City Planning Ideal, 1902–1903

7 The New Planning Ideal and the Public Interest, 1902–1904

8 The Outburst of Great Civic Schemes, 1902–1905PART III The Pioneer Planners and Their Plans

9 City Beautiful Planning: Dreams and Reality, 1905–1909

10 City Beautiful Planning: A Transistional Art, 1905–1909PART IV A New Field of Public Endeavor

11 The Social Progressive Challenge, 1909

12 The Birth of City Planning, 1909–1910

PART V The Problem of Workability

13 An Elusive Quest, 1911–1917

14 Opportunistic Interventionism, 1911–1917

15 Epilogue: American Urban Planning as a Fragmented Art

Johns Hopkins University Press

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