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Cartographica extraordinaire, the historical map transformed
Rumsey; Punt (2004). Cartographica extraordinaire, the historical map transformed. Dome Printing Sacramento: California, USA. ISBN 1-58948-044-9. 147 pp.

Available in Authors 
Document type: Atlas

Keywords
    Atlases; Cartography; Geologic maps

Authors  Top 
  • Rumsey
  • Punt

Abstract
    David Rumsey's collection of historical maps is one of the largest and most complete of its kind. Focused for the most part on North and South America in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the collection is comprised of more than 150.000 items: maps, atlases, and contextual supporting documents. Unlike similar collections, the delicacy and rarity of which necessitate carreful storage and restricted-use policies, The Rumsey Collection is avaialable in growing numbers on thez Web- and it is this conjunction of old and new technologies that is the heart of Cartographica Extraordinaire.The maps selected for Cartographica Extraordinaire tell a hundred distinct, exciting, important, and sometimes controversial stories, along two main paths of inquiry: how did a continental wilderness become a civilization, and how has the development of cartographic science changed the ways we perceive, describe, study, and use that land?Geographic information systems have come, as part of the digital revolution, to dominate the cartography of today, but GIS didn't leap into being out of nowhere; all its processes and capabilities have precursors in historical maps. Old maps can therefore tell us not only the stories of their subject matter, but stories about the nature of mapmaking as well: its exigencies and limitations, trends and developments-its theory and practice and what that tells us about the people we were, are, and will be.

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