How Maps Made America

How maps made America

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Explore five centuries of American history through remarkable maps

Throughout its history, America has been defined through maps. Whether made for military strategy or urban reform, to encourage settlement or to investigate disease, maps give information meaning by translating it into visual forms. As such, they offer unrivalled windows into the past.

Join Susan Schulten as she discusses her new book, A History of America in 100 Maps. From the voyages of European ‘discovery’ to the digital age, Schulten showcases the power of maps to both illuminate and complicate the past.

Gathered from the British Library’s collection, these maps range from the iconic to the unfamiliar. Some were made by established mapmakers, while others were drawn by lesser-known figures such as soldiers on the front, Cherokee tribal leaders, and the first generation of girls to be formally educated. As tools of statecraft and diplomacy, instruments of social reform or even advertisements, they demonstrate the many ways that maps both reflect and shape history.

Susan Schulten is Professor of History at the University of Denver. She is the author of Mapping the Nation: History and Cartography in 19th-Century America (2012) and The Geographical Imagination in America 1880-1950, both published by University of Chicago Press.

The talk will be given in spoken English with BSL interpretation. The talk will be followed by a complimentary drinks reception and book signing.

Sponsored by the Eccles Centre for American Studies at the British Library in collaboration with British Library Publishing

Image: Aeronautical View of the Panama Canal. [By] C.P. Gray, etc. (Profile of Panama Canal). Cartographic Items Maps 29.c.34


Name: How Maps Made America
Where: Knowledge Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Price: Full Price: £8.00
Member: £8.00
Senior 60+: £6.00
Student: £5.00
Registered Unemployed: £5.00
Under 18: £5.00
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546