Powhatan's Mantle was the emblem of kingship worn by Wahunsenacawh, also known as Chief Powhatan, father of Pocahontas. A deerskin cloak ornamented with shell beadwork, it may at first appear to be only clothing but in fact it is also a map of the Powhatan Confederacy, which ruled most of eastern Virginia when the English first settled there. The mantle was acquired by one of the John Tradescants whose collection was the foundation of Oxford University's Ashmolean Collection and the mantle resides there still today. The first linked article is a fascination article about the mantle as well as a gallery of images of and related to Powhatan's Mantle.
Strangemaps presents a unique map of the United Statements of America; it's a map of the USA with each state's motto (or a translation thereof) by artist Emily Wick. The strangemaps post includes an explanation of most of the mottoes below the image.
Martian maps and a few others in good quality PDF.
Worldmapper is a collection of world maps, where territories are re-sized on each map according to the subject of interest. There are now nearly 600 maps.Worldmapper
Visualizing Early Washington. A project at the Imaging Research Center of the University of Maryland-Baltimore County has reconstructed the original landscape of Washington DC before its radical transformation into a modern capital city. [more inside]
John Henry Wilbrandt Stuckenberg emigrated from Germany to the United States, where he was eventually a Chaplain in the American Civil War. He also really liked maps; in the course of traveling over his lifetime, he collected hundreds of maps, some dating back to the 16th century. [Most maps in Latin]
The Ryhiner Collection of maps has over 16000 images of world maps from 16th through 19th century. There are maps of every part of the world as well as sky maps, historical maps and optical views, caricatures & other drawings. All are viewable in high detail.
The Spertus Museum/Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies has just canceled Imaginary Coordinates due to complaints that some of the artwork (NSFW: nudity, disturbing imagery) in the exhibit had an anti-Israeli slant. [more inside]
Maps: Finding our place in the world is an exhibit at the Walters Art Gallery in Baltimore, and it runs until this Sunday June 8. That page contains images of a few of the maps. One of the many great things included is an animated map of the US Civil War in 4 minutes (one week per second, timeline noted at bottom, casualty counter rolling in bottom right corner - info about this animation) The exhibition book was previously linked here; that site includes higher-resolution versions of some more of the maps. I was floored by all the stuff they have; in terms of the rarity of the stuff in it, and the geek-delight factor, I think it's probably the best gallery show I've ever seen. [more inside]
Polyhedral Maps is a website that explores unconventional methods of mapping the surface of the earth. The most famous of these unusual maps was Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion map, which used the net of an icosahedron. Da Vinci had experimented with this technique in his “Octant” map of 1514, which used Reuleaux triangles as map elements. This process is now being used by photographers and artists in manipulating panoramic images. A good example is Tom Lechner’s The Wild Highways of the Elongated Pentagonal Orthobicupola.
Ruminations on the Borderlands of Cartography, or: What is not a map? "..as far as animals with map-like blotches on them, they don't get in the tent as family, but we might consider letting them in as entertainers." [via]
Tohoku University's Kano Collection is an unparalleled collection of japanese books from the Edo period. The beautiful and grizzly Kaibou zonshinzu anatomical chart has been making the blogrounds lately but that's only one of the countless treasures the Kano Collection has to offer. Stumbling around near-blindly, like a non-Japanese reader such as myself, with only minimal help from the site, I have come across an amazing variety of beautiful objects, such as this picture book, a scroll with images of animals, city map, map of Japan, battle map, another picture book, the Kaitai shouzu anatomical chart and this picture scroll which has my favorite little scene I've come across in the collection. Whole days could be spent just surfing idly through the Kano Collection.
Physicist Howard Wiseman has a hobby, history. On his website he has three history subsites, filled with lots of information: 1) Ruin and Conquest of Britain 2) 18 Centuries of Roman Empire 3) Twenty Centuries of "British" "Empires". Especially informative are his many maps. As he says himself: "Drawing historical maps of all sorts has been a hobby of mine since my mid teens. Now I can do it digitally, and inflict it upon the world!"
The Gough, or Bodleian map is surprisingly accurate considering it dates from the 14th century. The Map is considered the first true map of Britain. Some say the red lines cris-crossing the map are roads, however, some disagree. You be the judge, because the map is available for interractive viewing at Queens University Belfast.
What does "globalization" look like? Princeton's searchable collection of historical maps and present-day analysis, including Artists' Travels in the Renaissance, an 1891 ethnographic chart, Telegraph Lines in 1869, Global Terrorism c. 1983, Oil reserves vs. consumption, a visualization of world development since 1960. (via)
A collection of unusual maps from Maps: Finding Our Place in the World by James Akerman and Robert Karrow, including slavery maps of the US from the 19th Century, maps of the voyage of the Pequod from Moby Dick and a mappe of Fairyland. All the maps are available in high resolutions with zoom functioning. [via The Edge of the American West]
The blonde map of Europe. According to this map at least 80% of the population is fair-haired, in the central parts of Norway, Sweden and Finland. So make your reservations to see the blondes now, as the BBC reports that we'll be out of blondes by 2202. Though, Snopes calls BS on this. [more inside]
Landsat Image Mosaic Of Antarctica UK and US researchers peice together the most detailed map of Antarctica yet, searching through years of data to find cloud free images.
Lost? Why not consult a map? Because, according to a past exhibit at the British Library, the mapmaker might have a political agenda.
Maps new and old. Music maps - Find out who is listening to what and where l Cool Google Maps - Who knew maps could be fun? l Subway maps on five continents l Free printable world map and blank maps l Free Clustr Maps - Locate all site visitors. l Index of some users of WorldKit - Easy web mapping (including the excellent and previously mentioned, RSOE HAVARIA Emergency and Disaster Information Service) l Number of Inhabitants Per Doctor around the world l And some beautiful antique, old and vintage maps, such as this one of the names of the Mediterranean winds in five languages. [more inside]
Antique Maps of China A database of 230 maps, charts, pictures, books and atlases from the Special Collections of The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Library. You can browse thumbnails of maps dating back to the 15th century, then download a splendid colour PDF, for example, the 1923 map Carte des environs de Peking. There are also some world maps and ones of a few other places.
Do you know the way to San Jose? I found this googling for map images for an animated title sequence I am doing. Wow. A treasure trove of antique maps of every age, description and location.
Brazilian Ethnomapping: Inside a thatched-roof schoolhouse in a village deep in Brazil's Amazon rain forest, Surui Indians and former military cartographers huddle over the newest weapons in the tribe's fight for survival: laptop computers, satellite maps and hand-held global positioning systems. Some of the resulting maps.
Canada at scale: Exploration, colonization and development. And a pop-up menu. Go, eh!
Wiki City Rome - "anyone with an Internet connection will be able to see a unique map of the Italian capital that shows the movements of crowds, event locations, the whereabouts of well-known Roman personalities, and the real-time position of city buses and trains."
If you like looking at maps of imaginary places, you should take a peek at the Fantasy Atlas, a German-language collection of maps of literary fantasy and sci-fi worlds. For a more obsessive (but just as interesting) take on maps of imaginary places, you can check out the work of Adrian Leskiw, who's been creating road maps of non-existent places since the age of 3. (Previously on Metafilter.)
Wired presents an extraordinary look at "one of the most ambitious search-and-rescue missions in history," after one of Microsoft's researchers, Jim Gray, and his boat, the Tenacious, went missing in the Pacific Ocean outside San Francisco in January 2007. Cartography meets law meets 2.0 technology. "First the Coast Guard scoured 132,000 square miles of ocean. Then a team of scientists and Silicon Valley power players turned the eyes of the global network onto the Pacific." Eventually, Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, the US Navy, NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium jumped in – "as did astronomers from leading universities." To this day, Jim Gray has never been found, and his disappearance cannot be explained. Read Wired for more.
Bugaboo Daytrips is a gorgeous site featuring 22 strollable daytrips in major cities worldwide (not just US Only), all laid out on beautiful artistic (yet still helpful) maps with downloadable PDFs for taking with you on your wanderings. For those terrified of being marketed to, it should be noted that Bugaboo is a baby stroller company, although the site is by no means of restricted interest to parents only, and bugbaoo's presence on the site seems confined to the URL. Also note that unfortunately for those alergic to it, the site is designed entirely in Flash. On the other hand, the maps & art are really awesome, so you should do yourself a favor & get over it this time. Via.
Northwestern University hosts a fine collection of historic East African photographs, viewable as sample sets or in their original photo-albums (requires flash). But the real prize is their wonderful collection of 113 historic maps of Africa, which are zoomable to incredible detail, also 1, 2, 3. via
For anyone with even a passing interest in Islamic history or cartography, 'The Book of Curiosities of the Sciences and Marvels for the Eyes' site at Oxford University's Bodleian Library will provide a thoroughly interesting timesink. This recently discovered 13th/14th century copy of an 11th century Egyptian manuscript was partly based on Ptolemy and includes the oldest rectangular map of the world...not to mention the famed human-bearing Waq-Waq tree. [via]
Rebel cartography, postmodern art, or political statement? Nikolas Schiller makes art from satellite/flyover images.
The Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library has 200,000 historic maps and 5,000 atlases. A whole heap of them is online in very high resolution and you can explore the collection by location, subject, date, publisher, author and projection. They give virtual tours, select a map of the month and have a section called Maps in the News, where they profile Darfur and Iraq.
Imaginary places in detail: Start with a wonderful overview of megastructures in science fiction and examine a dictionary of 76 locations from recent fantasy novels. Then move on to the interactive maps: Mordor, Narnia, the Simpson's Springfield, England as seen in many stories, New York in fiction, Lovecraft's New England, maps from almost any video game, Star Trek, the Marvel Universe, and the DC Universe.
Mountaineer, Scientist, Photographer Brad Washburn dies at 96. Across the world of mountaineering, but especially in New England, people are mourning a legend. He discovered the West Buttress Route -- the most popular route -- on Denali. He was director of Boston's Museum of Science for forty years. He took some of the most iconic photos of mountains and mountaineers. He won the National Geographic Society's Centennial Award and the King Albert Medal of Merit. His name may not be familiar, but chances are that you've seen his work.
Strange maps: the start of a collection of curious cartography found online, be they historic, quirky, practical or fictional.
Do you know where you are? With Google Maps and Google Earth so commonplace now, GPS everywhere, and with websites such as our own Metafilter making use of latitude and longitude did you ever stop to think about how all this latitude, longitude and height above sea level works? The UK's Ordnance Survey explains it all in A Guide to Coordinate Systems in Great Britain. Discover that different coordinate systems might differ by as much as 200m, and that your house may be moving as much as 1m up and down each day relative to the centre of the Earth, and many other bits of geographical interest.[more inside]
"Getting There." MapQuest demystified from The New Yorker.
The Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography Maps, mappers, and the history of mapping, with slide shows, online exhibitions (e.g. The French Empire in North America, popular cartography), and journal articles. Part of the Newberry Library, Chicago.
OpenStreetMap is a free editable map of the whole world, using uploaded GPS traces. So far: London and several other cities have been mapped. (via dataisnature)
Radical Cartography. A collection of interesting maps such as place-name etymology, the US suicide rate, animal/vegetable production and an interactive tourist map of Nice, FR.
The Map Realm If you're the kind of person that likes to stare at maps, this guy has taken it one step further, making maps of imaginarely locales with an amazing level of detail. I particularly like the hand drawn versions Found via the monkeys
Places and spaces is an exhibit which aims to compare and contrast the first maps of our entire planet with the first maps of all of science as we know it.