Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Extermination of the American Bison

Artist David Buckley Borden created this wonderful, sad map showing the demise of the bison.

Borden adds many clever touches to his maps including the downward facing buffalo head.
The map is based on conservationist William Hornaday's 1889 map that showed the declining range of the bison throughout North America. Hornaday is credited with preserving the bison from extinction. The present day (2003) tiny distribution of bison herds is shown in the tiny upside down* map in the bottom right corner.

Hornaday's original map is also quite striking.
 Here is a detail-you can click on the map above for a full, zoomable version.
*The upside down map is a theme of Borden's. Here is a detail of his Ecological Distress Hydroscape Map. I like the clever use of arrows to indicate distress points-including the City of Ecological Sin.
In Borden's words:
No disrespect should be shown to the map of the United States of America; the map should never be displayed with the Great Lakes down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life, property or landscape.

More of his maps can be seen on this page.

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