Archive for Maps

Jersey City Development Map Now Updated Through September 28, 2018

This latest iteration still maintains all the features of the previous version; it is just a more recent version that reflects the amount of building activity underway or planned for this city. The Google Maps pages are a little behind recent development; for University Place, there is no mention of Hernandez Way.

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Online Primary Sources: The Down Survey of Ireland

The wars that tore apart Ireland in the mid-1600s and resulted in the deaths of twenty percent of the population had other repercussions as well. In order to reward his soldiers and to settle some previous debts, Oliver Cromwell awarded land to his followers. However, in order to give the land away, the government needed to know what land there was. So a massive survey was undertaken to delineate the lands in Ireland – the first time such a large-scale survey had been attempted. This became known as the Down Survey of Ireland.

This website allows some granular investigations, and it is amazing at the data that can be retrieved. For instance, one can track the forfeiture of land from a Catholic landowner in 1641 to a Protestant one in 1670, mirroring the shift in land ownership throughout the country as the English forced the Catholic population into forfeiture and registered the lands under Protestant hegemony. And the process, initiated by Cromwell was furthered by his successor Charles II.

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Jersey City Development Maps

At this site are contained two development maps: the Downtown Development Map has an August 26, 2015 date while the Journal Square map is dated 8-25-15. Composed of colored legends, each document lists proposals, approved projects, projects under construction, recently completed projects, and pre-1997 projects completed. Along with that data, every project also has: the number of stories, the number of housing units (if applicable), square footage for retail, square footage for office space, the number of parking spaces, and project site number that coordinates to the above maps. From our perspective it appears that Jersey City’s growth and expansion will continue unabated for years to come.

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American Civil War Animated Maps

Sometimes it is very difficult when reading about the history of a battle to have a good picture in your head of what actually transpired. Movements of large bodies of troops over various terrains from different directions at varying times can leave a reader confused as to the actual troop placement. To remedy that civilwar features the major battles in an animated fashion. Brief biographies of the commanding generals are included along with informative narratives. Each battle’s presentation is based upon scholarly sources that are noted at the beginning of each section. This site is certainly worth looking at to get a clear picture out of the fog of war.

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Languages Spoken in the United States

The Census Bureau has just released its newest report on language usage in the United States based on previous reports from the American Community Survey. In addition, it has released its 2011 LanguageMapper that allows a researcher to find the concentrations of speakers of fifteen different languages on an interactive map. For example, the map allows one to zero in on various municipalities in New Jersey to show in which towns various languages are spoken. Look up Jersey City and see what languages are spoken here. While the map is limited to fifteen languages, statistics on many more languages are found in the report. In either case, these are  valuable and informative tools.

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Maps of London

Almost 1200 maps of London and its immediate surroundings are found at the Crace Collection of Maps of London hosted by the British Library. The maps go from 1570 to 1860 and show the remarkable development of the city, and its ability to recover from such a disaster as the Great Fire of 1666 (as described by Samuel Pepys:” We stayed till, it being darkish, we saw the fire as only one entire arch of fire from this to the other side of the bridge, and in a bow up the hill, for an arch of above a mile long. It made me weep to see it. The churches, houses, and all on fire and flaming at once, and a horrid noise the flames made, and the cracking of houses at their ruin.” Diary, Sunday, 2 September 1666) Every map is accompanied by a description and other data as well as having a zoomable feature that allows you to “blow up” the map’s details. For example, the 1854 map of what would become to be called the London Zoo can be enlarged so you can actually see the shadows that the mapmaker created for this map! There is an informative introduction by the curator as well as an overall description and arrangement scheme of the collection. For those wanting to seek out additional maps, you can visit the David Rumsey Map Collection for historical representations and the Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection for more recent items.

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Online Historical Maps of New York City

The New York Public Library has recently finished the digitization of 124 atlases on New York City. Most are fire insurance; i.e. Sanborn, maps of the city and its boroughs. The volumes range from 1815-1948 and contain over 7000 maps. If you want to see what neighborhoods looked like in startling detail back in the day, this would be a good first stop. These maps give you an idea of how the city has expanded over time, and that it did not have the same boundaries as it does now. For instance, where we grew up in Brooklyn is not even on the maps from the 1880s.

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