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Mountains of Western China, 1928

China - Mountains of Western China
New York State Archives, NYSA_A3045-78_A12969
Document Description
Mountains in Western China, 1928.
What landforms are in the photograph?
Why do you think there aren’t any houses in this photograph?
What other mountain ranges are in China besides the Himalayas?
Why would these mountains be difficult to climb?
Historical Challenges
Make a timeline of the history of human attempts to climb Mount Everest. Had a human reached the summit of Mount Everest at the time this photograph was taken?
Interdisciplinary Connections
Math: Of only 19 mountains in the world that are more than 7000 meters high, seven are in China. How many feet high are these mountains? How many feet high is Mount Everest?
Science: How were the Himalaya Mountains formed?
Science: What wildlife might live in the area shown in the photograph?
Anderson, Dale. Ancient China (History in Art). Chicago: Raintree, 2005. ISBN: 1410905195
Ball, Jacqueline A. Ancient China: Archaeology Unlocks the Secrets of China’s Past. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2007. ISBN: 079227783X

Green, Jen. Countries of the World: China. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2006. ISBN: 9780792261803, 9780792275756
Mamdani, Shelby. Traditions from China. Austin: Raintree Steck-Vaughn, 1999. ISBN: 0817253831

Olson, Kay Melchisedech. China. Minn.: Capstone Press, 2003. ISBN: 0736815317

Olson, Nathan. China. Mankato, Minn.: Capstone Press, 2005. ISBN: 0736826874

Shuter, Jane. Ancient China (Excavating the Past). Chicago: Heinemann, 2006. ISBN: 1403459959.

Historical Context
China is the third largest country in the world.  The landscape is diverse, with mountains, hills, plateaus, plains, basins, deserts, and even subtropical forests.  The topography of China resembles a staircase, with the highest elevations in the western part of the country and the lowest elevations in the eastern part of the country.  On the top “step” in western China is the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, which is called “the roof of the world.”  This plateau is home to the Himalaya mountain range and the world’s highest mountain, Mount Everest (or Mount Qomolangma).  Located on China’s border with Nepal, Mount Everest rises a staggering 8,844 meters above sea level.
Essential Question
How does geography influence the development of a society?
Check for Understanding
Describe the scene in the photograph and discuss the impact of geography on Chinese civilization.