Lines of longitude and latitude define and refine my altitude
May 11, 2018 7:59 PM   Subscribe

National Geographic has digitally archived the six-thousand-plus maps they've published over their 130-year history. Although the entire archive isn't available to the public, staff cartographers will be sharing their favorites over various social media outlets. [THANKS JESSAMYN]
posted by not_on_display (18 comments total) 60 users marked this as a favorite
Oh rad.
posted by cortex at 8:03 PM on May 11 [1 favorite]

thanks jessamyn
posted by cortex at 8:04 PM on May 11 [7 favorites]

Somewhere to download any of the maps in high resolution?
posted by rmmcclay at 8:15 PM on May 11

> Somewhere to download any of the maps in high resolution?

I can view higher-res images by, say, going on twitter, clicking on an image, and then right-clicking on the enlarged image to view or download it. This example is 2048 × 1143 pixels, 72 pixels/inch. Not SUPER high quality, but not shabby.

Heh the example includes "Flathead National Forest" — I am crushing all of your heads, you Rocky Mountains! crush crush crush
posted by not_on_display at 8:25 PM on May 11 [1 favorite]

This is cool. We were talking cartography and globes earlier today at work. I have an old globe from the early 90s that still has the USSR on it and we were discussing how that's become something of a historical artifact from a very specific time and place.
posted by Fizz at 8:27 PM on May 11 [1 favorite]

These were my wallpaper as a kid. I still remember eagerly looking for the red letters at the top of a new issue when I came in--"MAP SUPPLEMENT".
posted by resurrexit at 8:30 PM on May 11 [14 favorites]

Thank you, not_on_display! Those are excellent. Still would like even higher resolution, but the level of quality on twitter is good enough for now.
posted by rmmcclay at 8:32 PM on May 11

Best title of the month!

And I can’t wait to dig into these.
posted by rock swoon has no past at 8:36 PM on May 11 [3 favorites]

Mmmmmmm, maps!
posted by BlueHorse at 8:54 PM on May 11

Best title of the month!

Yeah, million points to Gryffindor for any Wire reference.
posted by theartandsound at 9:56 PM on May 11 [2 favorites]

I used to LOVE it when a big ol' map would come in National Geographic, it was like a toy in a cereal box. I'd pore for hours.
posted by rhizome at 12:05 AM on May 12

NatGeo has some damn fine web-only mini-docs. The NatGeo channel was a hot mess the last time I checked, but online? This blew my mind. Only The National Geographic Society can deliver a picture of the globe where it gets ever larger and more mysterious rather than smaller and categorically defined, kind of in opposition to the BBC.

They are a Society dedicated to Geography, and understand that geography changes and flows with science and politics. These maps are hot fire. I love them.

(I could ramble on for hours about the loaner library of photographic equipment from the age of film, and how you could pick out the Nikon shots from the Leica R-series shots by look alone. Nikon does flash and large aperture lenses better, but their glass screws up reds in anything not Kodachrome. Leica just makes everything glow ethereally and makes the photo look more real than reality. You also have to have a light meter or a lot of experience to make it work, because Leica's TTL metering for their SLRs was not so hot. No autofocus, either, but the Nikon guys typically shut it off unless for a stunt photo.)
posted by Slap*Happy at 2:28 AM on May 12 [5 favorites]

This is great. Our favorite neighborhood sandwich shop has National Geographic maps on the wall of each booth, and it’s impossible not to sit there and examine them the entire time you’re in the place. Just last night I was eating a ham sandwich learning about the western United States exploration routes of the 1800s.
posted by something something at 3:53 AM on May 12 [3 favorites]

When I was a kid, my dad had a seemingly perpetual NatGeo subscription. I remember the first maps that I really geeked-out to were the series of ocean floor paintings. Real imagination fuel, those were.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:48 AM on May 12 [2 favorites]

Awesome title. Best song MBV ever (re)made.
posted by Jessica Savitch's Coke Spoon at 6:34 AM on May 12 [1 favorite]

I was a poor kid who went to grammar school with rather wealthy kids. I didn't care about their clothes, fancy toys, better haircuts, servants, parents' cars, etc., but the fact that their homes had a study, library, rec room whatever containing multi-decade runs of Nat Geo made me sad and envious. I liked especially the info maps filled with mini-facts about explorers, history, etc.
posted by Chitownfats at 4:35 PM on May 12 [1 favorite]

Heh the example includes "Flathead National Forest" — I am crushing all of your heads, you Rocky Mountains! crush crush crush

Also of interest in that map is that there is the Blood Indian Reserve on the Canadian side and the Blackfeet Indian Reserve on the American side. They are both part of the Blackfoot Confederacy. So a confederacy within both the United States and Canada. The Six Nations or Iroquois confederacy is the other border spanning Indian/First Nations nation.
posted by srboisvert at 11:08 AM on May 13 [2 favorites]

Lines of longitude and latitude define and refine my altitude

...I am the very model of a modern Major-General!
posted by Morfil Ffyrnig at 12:52 AM on May 16 [1 favorite]

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