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Old 05-31-2013, 02:47 PM
 
Location: Circumnavigating the Globe
24 posts, read 21,371 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bchris02 View Post
I would say the 100th meridian is probably the best definition of where the West begins. There are elements of Western culture east of the 100th meridian especially in Texas and Oklahoma, but those areas are also heavily Southern (Dixie) as well. The pure west starts at the 100th meridian.
I agree with bchris02
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Old 05-31-2013, 02:53 PM
 
Location: northern Vermont - previously NM, WA, & MA
9,425 posts, read 18,324,231 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deezus View Post
As far as the northern or western border for the Southwest--that's fairly debatable. Las Vegas feels like the Southwest, though I wouldn't consider Reno or Salt Lake City to really feel that Southwestern. Nor is Los Angeles. The core of the Southwest is really Arizona and New Mexico plus El Paso--then you sort of work the border out from there.
American Southwest - culturally and topographically includes....

all of New Mexico and Arizona
East of Palm Springs, CA
West of the Pecos in Texas
Clark County Nevada
Southern Utah
small parts of Colorado might be debatable

state lines are very arbitrary when discussing where the boundaries of the West are

Last edited by Desert_SW_77; 05-31-2013 at 03:08 PM..
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Old 05-31-2013, 03:49 PM
 
Location: Shaw.
2,226 posts, read 3,143,092 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AQUEMINI331 View Post
Were there slaves / plantations in that part of Texas?
Looks like both were about 30-40% Black/slave and that was the western boundary of slavery:

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Old 05-31-2013, 05:47 PM
 
9,967 posts, read 14,612,674 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caphillsea77 View Post
American Southwest - culturally and topographically includes....

all of New Mexico and Arizona
East of Palm Springs, CA
West of the Pecos in Texas
Clark County Nevada
Southern Utah
small parts of Colorado might be debatable

state lines are very arbitrary when discussing where the boundaries of the West are
Yeah, that sounds about right. The feel of the Southwest sort of continues up through to the north of the Four Corners a little ways. Durango, Colorado--due to proxmity to New Mexico sometimes gets almost considered part of the Southwest though it feels more like the rest of Colorado. Moab might be sort of the edge of the Southwest as well.

I think as you go north, the Native American culture isn't as evident as in parts of Arizona and New Mexico(though there's other areas with little of it) and neither is the Hispanic culture for the most part(though Colorado has a lot of it).

Parts of Colorado are almost an outlier to the Southwest. Denver area doesn't feel that Southwestern for the most part but there's some similiarities to the rest of the Southwest in parts--the love of green chilli stews and sauces and the red rock areas just on the foothills of the Rockies(Garden of the Gods area is like a small piece of the SW; there's even adobe houses in the outlying neighborhood). I was just in Denver last month though and it felt like sort of the place where the Rockies, Southwest and Great Plains(or even Midwest) sort of come together--it's really still a city in the middle of the frontier.

Las Vegas fits into the Southwest as sort of being on the edge of it--and the surrounding area and climate definitely fits in with that part of the desert SW. And going north--or towards the Owens Valley in California, the SW-feeling of the area seems to disapate a bit...
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:26 AM
 
10,167 posts, read 17,112,011 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pgm123 View Post
I think Texas Reb might step in here and say that they're the far west of the South. It was definitely a part of the South antebellum.
LOL Been out of town for the last week so really just now caught this thread! But anyway, yes, you are right. I consider western Texas (generally a little west of I-35W) to be the "Western South." That is to say, essentially Southern, but with post-bellum frontier/western traits not so typical of the "Eastern South" or classic "Old South." As you say, PGM, San Antonio is right along the line and it definitely contains ante-bellum Old South type history, and advertises itself as such. This is something not at all "southwestern" as in a Phoenix or Santa Fe.

But anyway, as several posters have alluded to, a lot of the answer (IMHO) revolves around whether or not the original question is intended to mean:

1. Where does the East end and West begin? Or...

2. Where does the South or Midwest become the true West in an historical/political/cultural sense?

Now, I can't offer a competent opinion beyond one on Texas -- that would be up to those in other states of the so-called Frontier Strip - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia -- so this is just my worthless two-cents worth as concerns my native state.

If it is the former? Then the 100th Meridian (as many have stated), would probably fit the bill unquestionably in a climatic sense. But just about anywhere from west of I-35 would be pretty well accurate as far as where the east ends and west begins in an historic sense.

If, however, it was intended to ask about a demarcation line between the West and South or the West and Midwest? Then the answer gets a hell of a lot more complicated, problematic and, quite often, the point of a major debate! LOL

I definitely consider the trans-pecos region of Texas to be the true Southwest, as in "southern West"; which is in stark contrast to the "western South", which is all other parts of western Texas. Reason being, there is nothing noteably "Southern" about any area west of the Texas/New Mexico border, whereas there is quite a bit (relatively speaking) for that east. For one thing, most west Texans self-identify with the South in regional study surveys. The Southern Baptist Church is easily the largest protestant church, the dialect spoken is obviously Southern American English, and the vast majority of the pioneers to the area were from the southeastern United States and brought their attitudes/culture/and politics with them. Heck, Confederate monuments are on many county courthouse lawns and -- far as that goes -- many counties are named for Confederate figures and politicians.

Quite a bit of the same can be said of Oklahoma as well...

Anyway, in a nut-shell, I would define the true West -- from the historical/cultural aspect -- as those states west of the above "frontier strip (but slice off trans-pecos Texas! LOL). The Rocky Mountain, interior Southwest, and west Coast states just have a totally different outlook and were shaped by completely different movements and forces than were Texas and Oklahoma (Southern), and Kansas, Nebraska (Midwestern).
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:34 AM
 
14,111 posts, read 22,753,233 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TyrannosaurusZack View Post
The Mississippi river duhh. Everything East of it is back East, everything West is out West, lol. Actually in my personal opinion the West is purely states with an In N Out.
I think Miami's getting an In N Out if it doesn't have one already(or maybe It was Fatburger that expanded from California to Miami). Really, another good measure would be states that have Carl Jr's instead of Hardees.
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:43 AM
 
10,167 posts, read 17,112,011 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryBTL View Post
Depends on what it is? Via weather people and such see my explanation BUT with this i think yours matches better outside of se TX. Culturally yours is closer/more accurate. However i would exclude areas east of say I35 and or se Texas.

Texas is a hard one east of I-35.. While it is not Dixie ( I consider MS, AL, GA, SC, NC, FL, TN Dixie ) it does not have the traditional western feel to the area. Beaumont, TX is alot like S.LA as is a good part of the Houston area.
This is a good post, but I just have to quibble a bit with the "Dixie" thing. But only quibble, mind you, when it comes to west Texas! LOL

Seriously, strictly speaking, "Dixie" is defined as the 11 states that formed the Confederacy during the War Between the States. So, really, El Paso, Texas is as much "Dixie" as is Savannah, Georgia! LOL

Of course, I hasten to add I definitely agree that western Texas does not fit that "moonlight and magnolias" imagery often envisioned when considering the term (Dixie)...but see any dictionary when it comes to how defined.

Now, where we really DO part company is your seeming rejection of the eastern parts of Texas. How in the world, with the ante-bellum and staunchly secessionist and Confederate attitudes and Old South plantation culture, would it not be part of "Dixie" even by the strictest definitions of Deep South purists? Sorry, and we can discuss it, but this one is out of the ballpark! LOL
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:46 AM
 
7,238 posts, read 10,893,462 times
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I would say the Rocky Mountains are the dividing line.
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC (in my mind)
7,946 posts, read 15,042,083 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasReb View Post
This is a good post, but I just have to quibble a bit with the "Dixie" thing. But only quibble, mind you, when it comes to west Texas! LOL

Seriously, strictly speaking, "Dixie" is defined as the 11 states that formed the Confederacy during the War Between the States. So, really, El Paso, Texas is as much "Dixie" as is Savannah, Georgia! LOL

Of course, I hasten to add I definitely agree that western Texas does not fit that "moonlight and magnolias" imagery often envisioned when considering the term (Dixie)...but see any dictionary when it comes to how defined.

Now, where we really DO part company is your seeming rejection of the eastern parts of Texas. How in the world, with the ante-bellum and staunchly secessionist and Confederate attitudes and Old South plantation culture, would it not be part of "Dixie" even by the strictest definitions of Deep South purists? Sorry, and we can discuss it, but this one is out of the ballpark! LOL
Texas east of I-35 is about as 'Dixie' as you can get. Houston is cosmopolitan but in the rural areas, it feels far more like Louisiana and Arkansas than it does New Mexico or even Trans-Pecos Texas.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pgm123 View Post

Btw, there is something I've sort of been wondering this thread that's a bit off topic. Where is the northern line for the "Southwest," and is Los Angeles a part of the Southwest? Also, is Eastern Oregon a part of the "Pacific Northwest" or is the line the Cascade Mountains?
This is actually a good question. The 'west coast' is a different region in its entirety than the whole of the West. The west coast is clearly defined as anything west of the Pacific Coast ranges, both topographically and culturally. Therefore I would say San Bernardino is part of the Southwest, but Los Angeles proper is 'west coast' grouped with everything from San Diego to Seattle.
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Old 06-01-2013, 12:02 PM
 
Location: A Land Not So Far Away
3,956 posts, read 2,816,173 times
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Just my opinion: Even though it's been said that the Gateway Arch in St Louis is the "Gateway to the West", I have always believed it's a little misleading. The west is further west than that. I believe it begins (going westward) at the Mountain Time Zone line. It's as legit a location if you take a look at where that line is.
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