Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Map of the Week-Henry Hudson 400

The Henry Hudson 400 Foundation was founded to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Hudson's voyage to North America. He explored New York harbor and sailed up what is now the Hudson River hoping to find the northwest passage to the Pacific. Instead he found Albany.

The Foundation has put together a series of events including a rare maps and documents exhibit; New Amsterdam, The Island at the Center of the World at the South Street Seaport Museum. The exhibit opened September 13th and runs through the end of the year. They also have put together an excellent website with a series of antique maps and data overlaid onto Google's maps.

This map shows Hudson's four voyages. The third one, in dark green took place in 1609. He explored the North Atlantic coast as far south as the Chesapeake Bay. The fourth voyage made it as far as the Hudson and James Bays in 1611 before his crew killed him in a mutiny.

Historic maps can be overlaid with Google in several ways. This is a direct overlay of a 1625 map of Amsterdam by Balthasar. The background map only shows up because I made a screen capture before it finished loading the Balthasar map.

This 1731 James Lynne plan of lower Manhattan was overlaid using the transparency slider so you can see some of the Google map details in the background.

There is also a side-by-side viewing option as seen for the map "Novi Belgii Novaeque Angliae Nec Non Partis Virginiae Tabula"
by Nicolaes Janzsoon Visscher & Augustine Herman (1651 - 1655)

The site has an "Origins" tab where you can get information about the first kosher butcher or the area's first prostitute. There are also links to other maps around the world from this period of exploration shown under the somewhat confusing "Map Illustrations" heading. Finally, there are a series "Water Challenges" due to rising sea levels. Happy exploring!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Map of the Week-Dust in the Wind

So Australia has this big dust storm that turns the sky orange, snarls traffic and causes health hazards and all I can think about is whether or not I can get a good map out of it. Truth is there are few maps to be had. The news sites are more interested in these remarkable pictures.

Seems to me that a map showing the extent of the storm, the damage, traffic tie-ups, anything would be very interesting but no such luck. After spending way too much time searching I finally turned to the trusty old BBC and found some decent maps.

This map shows extent of the storm as well as it's presumed origins at Lake Eyre Basin, a "dusty" area of desert in South Australia.

Most of the satellite images I've seen do not have places labeled, making it difficult to understand the scale of what you're looking at. The above image could be a couple of miles or several hundred miles. Thankfully the BBC came through again and put labels at Sydney and Brisbane, as well as a scale bar. Yes, we're seeing over a thousand miles of dust!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Map of the Week-Tasty Wine Maps

I don't know much about wine. My keen sense of taste tells me that some wines are "better" than others. I do know that my local liquor store is decorated with some nice, colorful maps including this one.

This map is huge and takes a long time to download so I only show a section of it above. It is available online here (click the "Quality Wines map" link) if you want to wait for it. The store also has nice regional maps of France, but I could not find those online. However, I did find lots of other maps. Here is a nice general map of France for people like me who only know the most basic distinctions.

Those with a keener palette may want to dig into a detailed region such as the Loire.

If you're planning some wine tourism you might want a detailed map like the one below of Madera, California. I mainly included this map because it is, in my cartographic opinion, cute. You might get lost if you actually try to use this map as its accuracy seems to get lost in all the cuteness.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Treasures from the DeLorme Store

Some nice maps are found in yard sales for pennies (previous post) but sometimes it's equally nice to browse through a map store and spend some money. A highlight of any trip to Maine is a visit to the DeLorme Map Store in Yarmouth. Not only does it have the world's largest rotating and revolving globe, it also has a great selection of maps and a budget bin full of surprises. I spent $42 and got lots of good stuff including:

Mount Washington trail map by The Wilderness Map Company. Nice clean lines and use of color. Printed on heavy stock to stand up to a snowy hike.

Afghanistan and Surrounding Territory by Oxford Cartographers. Includes all of Pakistan and Tajikistan. A good map to have with so much of this area in the news regularly.

Unfortunately the back side is blank - what a rip!

Miami Popout Map by Compass Maps. Yes popout maps are gimmicky and only show the touristy places but the cartography's well done and who doesn't like a good popout?

Oregon by Rand McNally. If you have the road atlas, then you have this map but it was in the budget bin and has some goofy tourist blurbs along with the city maps. I couldn't resist that. Who would have guessed that Salem has "governmental and agricultural activity"?

Map of Kennebec River trails (Augusta-Gardiner, Maine) produced for the Friends of the Kennebec River Rail Trail. This is a very attractive map/brochure with contributions from numerous conservation agencies. The detail above shows downtown Augusta.

Santa Monica Mountains - National Geographic's Trails Illustrated series. Printed on waterproof paper!

Santa Monica Pier from same map - Happy 100th birthday!