Today’s David Rumsey Talk on Pictorial Maps

Today was the second day of events celebrating the opening of the new David Rumsey Map Center at Stanford University. I was fortunate to be in the area already, giving a cartography workshop, and took the opportunity to go down and hear Rumsey give a short lecture on pictorial maps through the ages.

As soon as the talk began I took a quick picture for twitter, which was immediately seen by the guy in front of me. And thus BurritoJustice and I finally met in real life. Funny how things work out like that.

In his talk, Rumsey went over a plenitude of historical pieces at break-neck pace:

And used the term “visual culture,” which seemed a very apt phrase and well worth noting for future use. He explained that the era between 1915 to pre-World War II was especially rich with pictorial maps, created primarily for adventure, travel, and humorous purposes. He concentrated on pictorial maps from America, Europe, and Japan and remarked that 1926 in particular was an “amazing year for pictorial maps.”

The David Rumsey Map Center is located in Cecil H. Green Library, Bing Wing, 4th floor, Stanford University. Hours are Monday-Friday, 1:00-5:00 pm.


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