This 1932 British War Office world map image shows ‘the annual value of British Trade on various trade routes and sectors thereof, or passing important places’.
The value of trade passing along each of the sea routes is given in millions of pounds, and there are a few land routes shown as well. The appendix shows that British trade with foreign countries totalled nearly £2.5bn, whilst inter-imperial trade is £857m, an important 26% of the overall total.
Unsurprisingly given the value of this crucial economic information, the map was originally classified and available only to a restricted official audience.
- Article by:
- Tom Harper
The British Library’s map curator Tom Harper details the evolution of the map of the world in the 20th century, from the Navy League map of 1901 to a digital world view a century later.