Published in 1914, By Paying Us Your Pennies – or the Wonderground Map of London Town, as this cartographic icon became known – presents a bird’s eye view of the capital peopled with characters from every walk of life making whimsical quips or puns about road or place names:
- Men hurl hams in Hurlingham
- In Earls Court ‘the Earl’s caught!’
- A colourful serpent has taken up residence in the Serpentine.
Despite its chevrons and heraldic borders, it clearly presents a contemporary portrait of London with its motor cars and B-Type buses and a state-of-the-art monoplane looping the loop in the skies above. Press reports of the time claimed that 'People spend so long looking at this map – they miss their trains yet go on smiling' (Daily Sketch, May 1914).
Various retail editions were published in the following years, while map-makers across the world were inspired to create 'Wonder' maps of their own cities including Melbourne, Mexico City and Barcelona.
- Article by:
- Damian Walford Davies
- Transforming topography
Maps are often perceived as objective or ‘truthful’ representations of geographical data. In this article, Damian Walford Davies shows how they can also be vehicles for artistic or imaginative content, symbols, political agendas and cultural messages.
- Article by:
- Caroline Walker, Andrew Johnston
Caroline Walker and Andrew Johnston lift the lid on 20th-century cartographer MacDonald Gill. Learn about his life and career including his wartime maps and pictorial revamp of the map of the London Underground.