From the Goode's maps I acquired the view that proper maps had to have height and landform information, or else be thematic.
Not sure what you mean by this. I'm sure you don't mean it to be as sweepingly generalized a statement as it sounds!
(The atlas has a great selection of thematic maps.) The purely political maps of the Hammond atlases were a very inferior substitute, in my eyes.
I have Hammond atlases that show relief as well as political information. Hammond did road maps, physical maps, historical maps etc. – the full gamut, just as other map publishing companies did.
I also thought Goode's much superior in point of projections. I looked down on my benighted schoolmates, denied the benefits of a proper atlas!
Goode's atlas has also been a favorite of mine. I especially enjoy the earlier editions that had Physiography maps using Erwin Raisz's drawings. His physiographic drawings and hand lettering were combined with background colours, with stunning effect. Last year, I acquired the current Goode's atlas out of curiosity, and sure enough, the Raisz maps are gone. All the maps have been remade, but the general look and feel is still there, and the cartographic quality is still high.
My earlier remarks on Hammond maps were more based on what they reflected of the cartographic style during that time period. I also have lots of Oxford atlases. They all have a similar style.