We live in a sea of images. You probably have a little device within reach right now that contains photos of everything from last weekend's brunch to last year's office Christmas party. Not to mention all the images you scroll through on Google, Facebook, and Instagram in any given day.
Because of that, the idea of a coffee-table book of photography may seem not only old-fashioned, but downright ridiculous. But, especially in our ever-connected age, there's something to be said for the power of curated images on the printed page. Plus, you can't wrap up and gift a Tumblr account this holiday season.
Taschen's The United States of America contains over 700 stunning images of all 50 states from National Geographic's archive. The book is a state-by-state visual guide to more than 100 years of American history, from early black-and-white photos of the still-unsettled Western frontier to full-color shots of a post-Katrina New Orleans.
Ahead, we've culled together images from each of the 50 states (plus Guam and Washington, D.C.), one from each, to give you a glimpse into the sheer scope and scale of the remarkable collection — and a remarkable country.