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The Cover
September 5, 2007

The City of New Orleans, and the Mississippi River. Lake Pontchartrain in the Distance

Author Affiliations

The Cover Section Editor: M. Therese Southgate, MD, Senior Contributing Editor.

JAMA. 2007;298(9):956-957. doi:10.1001/jama.298.9.956

Orville Wright's pioneering flight was still 18 years into the future, and the first passenger flight would be another 10 years away. It is therefore understandable that in 1885 there was a fascination with how a city would look from the air. The Historical Sketch Book and Guide to New Orleans and Environs from that year advises tourists wanting the best view of the city to take an elevator to the top of the tallest building: the Shot Tower (located in the present Warehouse District), offering a vista from a height of 214 feet. Its breathless description of the panorama highlights the novelty of the aerial perspective, providing details about the way familiar landmarks and contours of the city become alien when viewed from above.

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