The military propaganda often uses a simple and effective method forcing a person to try on the possible adverse events or those misfortunes that fell plumb on at other people’s feet. In the United States of America, which remained neutral with the beginning of the World War I, although sympathetic to the Entente, the isolationist tendencies were strong. The great number of ordinary people and politicians in higher circles both believed that there was no need to get involved in a distant European war.
It was for these people the LIFE magazine released on February 10, 1916 with a noteworthy cover. There was depicted a map of the United States recognizable by the contour. However, all the names on this map were unusual.
All North America appeared as colonies of Germany and its allies. The USA became New Prussia, and all American cities changed their names to German ones. Thus, Washington became New Berlin, and New York became New Potsdam. Moreover, the territory of the United States was divided: Florida went to the Ottomans and became Turconia with the «Constantinople crossroads» and «Baghdad corner», the Mexican part of California became Austrian with the capital in New Vienna, but the American states of California, Oregon and Washington for some reason passed to Japan, which fought on the side of the Entente for a year and a half by the time the map was released. This did not stop the insidious Japanese from renaming Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland and Seattle into Yokoganjali, San Sisco, New Kobe and Nagasietl.
The map drawn by the LIFE artists is remarkably similar to the map of North America in the fictional world the of Philip Kindred Dick's novel “The Man in the High Castle” and the TV series of the same name. There is even an analogue of the «Neutral Zone» with internal self-government — on the map of 1916 it bears the name «American Reservation».
The geographical names on the map are original: the Atlantic Ocean became Tirpitz Ocean, and Jamaica became New Romania. The Great Lakes look the most beautiful, and instead of Upper, Huron, Michigan, Erie and Ontario, lakes full of beer please the eyes of an amateur.