1878 Colton missionary map of the world

Mammoth 1878 Missionary Map of the World on cloth

A mammoth and colorful 1878 missionary map of the world printed on linen, highlighting the global reach of the Protestant missionary movement.   This enormous banner features a double-hemisphere map of the world, with national boundaries delineated by dashed lines and major cities identified. Areas served by Protestant missions are underlined in green for American […]

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1902 Geo[rge] H. Walker & Co., Birds-Eye View from Summit of Mount Washington; White Mountains, New Hampshire

Iconic bird’s eye view of Mount Washington

A spectacular promotional bird’s-eye view of Mount Washington and the White Mountains, issued by the Boston & Maine Railroad. By the early 20th century the Lakes and White Mountain regions of New Hampshire were major tourist destinations, with a well-developed network of hotels and resort towns and villages. With the proliferation of the automobile some […]

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1912 United States of Guggenheimerica

Cartoon map taking aim at the Guggenheim mining empire

An unusual and mildly anti-Semitic cartographic cartoon from 1912 taking aim at the power of the Guggenheim Family and their purported corrupt dealings in Alaska. The cartoon depicts the United States in outline, towered over by eight of its industrial titans. East of the Mississippi are Morgan, Rockefeller and Carnegie, glaring across the river at […]

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1912 Historic and Prophetic Diagram of the World

A remarkable “Historic and Prophetic Diagram”

A striking early 20th-century “Historic and Prophetic” diagram, possibly in the “Dispensationalist” tradition, with a crude power that renders it a remarkable piece of American folk art. The Diagram is a riot of text, color and imagery, organized chronologically from 4004 B.C. to 1912 A.D., bracketed by the “Eternity of the Past” and “Eternity of […]

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California Development Board promotional map

A scarce 1914 map issued by the California Development Board to promote the state as a place to do business. Some of the more interesting features include the depiction of the rail network with heavy black lines; dozens of steamer routes funneling into San Francisco Bay; and an inset map demonstrating that the land area […]

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1918 Freiheit der Meere octopus map

German First World War propaganda map depicting Great Britain as a bloodsucking[!!!] octopus

A scarce First World War propaganda map, Freiheit der Meere depicts Great Britain (“the world’s bloodsucker”) as an octopus extending its tentacles to embrace its far-flung empire. The overall effect is rather comic, as the octopus is noticeably goggle-eyed and has 24 scrawny arms, while the “bloodsucker” label makes for a decidedly mixed metaphor. Nonetheless, the message […]

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1918 poster seeking relief for victims of the Armenian Genocide

1918 poster seeking relief for victims of the Armenian Genocide

A striking 1918 persuasive map seeking to bring attention to the Armenian Genocide.  Rather than reinvent the wheel, I quote at length from the excellent description on P.J. Mode’s Persuasive Maps web site: “The Armenian genocide – the systematic extermination of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire – began in the Spring of 1915. In September, […]

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Geographical Distribution of Lynchings 1930-1938.

Sequence of maps documenting the decline of lynching in 1930s America

Broadside bearing a simple but effective sequence of maps demonstrating the distribution and overall decline of lynching in America in the 1930s. The broadside was produced by the Association of Southern Women for the Prevention of Lynching (ASWPL). First established in Atlanta in 1930 in response to a sudden spike in the odious practice, the […]

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1941 Constitutional Education League anti Communist map

Anti-Communist map by the Constitutional Education League

A fascinating 1941 persuasive map by the Constitutional Education League, designed to expose the pervasive and oft-hidden influence of Communists, Nazis and fascists in American politics and culture. Note: This description is borrowed with permission from the work of PJ Mode, with only occasional edits and additions. This large map of the United States purports to […]

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Wacky WWII-era “Argu-Map” tablecloth by Reg Manning

A spectacular and wacky tablecloth map by cartoonist Reg Manning, commissioned in 1941 by a Phoenix department store to cater to Americans’ “sport of arguing the war.” This most unusual map depicts an outline map of the world in four gores on a north polar projection, or what artist Reg Manning refers to as an […]

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1942 MacDonald Gill map of AUSTRALIA Her Natural and Industrial Resources

MacDonald Gill propaganda map of Australia

A scarce MacDonald Gill pictorial map highlighting Australia’s economic contribution during the Second World War. This decorative map features an outline map of Australia all-but smothered in symbols highlighting its areas of agricultural, mineral and metal production. At upper right is the Australian coat of arms, featuring a shield bearing the symbol of each state, […]

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1944 " German Jigsaw " by R.M. Chapin

Time Magazine map of the post-WWII “ German Jigsaw “

A striking map depicting options for the dismemberment of Germany after the end of the Second World War. Rather remarkable for having been issued in February 1944, when the war’s outcome was far from clear. The map offers a vision of a defeated Germany carved into pieces, with Schleswig Holstein potentially ceded to Denmark and […]

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72 Second World War aerial propaganda leaflets

72 Second World War Allied aerial propaganda leaflets

An evocative and extraordinarily rare run of Allied propaganda leaflets air-dropped over northwest Europe in the wake of Operation Overload. All marked ZG, being from the so-called “tactical” series aimed chiefly at German (and allied French, Polish and Russian) troops. Background The American military had given psychological warfare been only “token recognition” during the First […]

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Mary Ronin's "THE UNITED STATES[:] The Land and the People"

Pictorial map celebrating American diversity

A colorful and upbeat pictorial map of the United States celebrating the “great diversity in its land and its people.” Published by the Department of State for the United States pavilion at the Brussels Universal and International Exhibition, better known as Expo 58. I quote at length from P.J. Mode’s description of the map on […]

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