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Universe of Maps - Opening the David Rumsey Map Center

South Wall, Right Case

Views of the World - 2

Cartographers have long represented the world in maps. The projections, graphic methods, and viewpoints have varied over the centuries, depending both on the state of cartographic knowledge and on the purpose of the map. The 12 maps in these two cases all take unique approaches and each one is a world unto itself. On the screen between the cases is today’s Google Earth, which shows the entire earth using satellite imagery at multiple resolutions, giving us a dynamic worldview that is yet again changing how we see and think about our planet.

Cram's Air Age. U.S. Centric World. Gingery Projection. George F. Cram Company. Indianapolis: ca. 1943
This map has a mileage tape anchored at Chicago for measuring air miles, as well as an air distances table. The text describes the advantages of Gingery projection, based on dividing a 16-inch globe into 6 gores radiating from Chicago. By the Gingery projection it is possible to show on a flat world map comparative equal area, equal distance and true shapes, both land and water, with a high degree of accuracy. Being a world map centered on the United States, it is possible to visualize the air direction and determine the Great Circle air distance from the United States to any place in the world.
Nanzenbushu bankoku shoka no zu. (Buddhist Map of the World). Rokashi (Hotan). Kyoto: 1710
This is the first world map printed in Japan. With Chinese text, it depicts a Buddhist cosmological view of the world combined with a reasonably accurate cartographic depiction of Asia and parts of Europe and America. At the center of the map is a quadruple helix which represents the birthplace of Buddha.
Map of the World on a Globular Projection. Aaron Arrowsmith. London: 1808
This map is notable as much for what it leaves out as for what it includes. Arrowsmith was an influential map maker who followed rigorously the latest discoveries and showed them on his maps. When he did not have accurate information, he left those areas of the world blank. Examples on this map are the western parts of North America, most of internal Africa, and most of Australia.
Le Tour du Monde en un Clin d'Oeil. M.M. Scott and Daniel Vierge. Paris: 1876
This map is projected as a view from space and details the world roughly from the Equator to the North Pole and from California to India. Flora, fauna, historic events, cultural artifacts, and indigenous people are represented pictorially. The whole world is shown in the “blink of an eye.”
Mail Steamship Routes. Leslie MacDonald Gill. Portsmouth: 1937
This colorful world map depicts the steamship routes that carried the majority of the UK’s international mail during the 1930s, framed by illustrations of the transport links through which the post would pass. A series of eleven vignettes show postal and maritime history and the development of sailing vessels from the time of King Alfred to the RMS Queen Mary. The map was commissioned by the General Post Office in 1937 and includes a redesign of the GPO logo by MacDonald Gill.

These four maps by Andreas Cellarius are from his Atlas Coelestisseu Harmonia Macrocosmica, published by Gerardum Valk & Petrum Schenk. The maps are from the Glen McLaughlin Collection of Maps of California as an Island. Note how California is depicted within these views of the world within the realm of the cosmos. Please refer to the center case across the room to learn more about the McLaughlin Collection. 

Situs Terrae Circulis Coelestibus Circundatæ. Andreas Cellarius. [Amsterdam]: [1660]
This map shows the Ptolemaic view of the universe with the spherical earth at the center, surrounded by a sphere of fixed stars which revolve daily from east to west as depicted by the ribbon of the zodiac, with winged figures throughout.
Typus Aspectuum, Oppositionum et con iunctionum etz in Planetis. Andreas Cellarius. [Amsterdam]: [1660]
Showing a circular ring of zodiac symbols, this map has lines connecting each symbol to the others. At the center is a map of the Northern Hemisphere.
Typus Selenographicus Lunæ Phases et Aspectus Varios Adumbrans. Andreas Cellarius. [Amsterdam]: [1660]
With the sun on the top and the earth at the center, this map shows the eight phases of the moon. In a playful touch, childlike draped figures adorn the chart. Look carefully to find California as an island.
Scenographia Systematis Copernicani. Andreas Cellarius. [Amsterdam]: [1660]
This map shows the Copernican system of four hemisphere views and paths of the planets, within the ring of the zodiac, depicting California as an island. A blindfolded royal figure is seated by a globe with Ptolemaic constellations.