Map Mania!

In several posts and pages now I have used screenshots from Google Earth showing overlays of historical maps, such as the example below.

Red Jacket Swamp (now Gregory Park and Frew Park), as depicted in 1850.

Red Jacket Swamp (now Gregory Park and Frew Park), as depicted in 1850.

I have found this to be a very useful way to both explore and present these maps, and because Google Earth is freely available, I had also hoped that it would provide a way for me to share these maps with anyone else who wants to explore them. However, until now the files that I have created have been clumsy and unreliable, at times crashing Google Earth as soon as they are opened. The files were also large and inconvenient to download.

I have now worked out how to prepare the maps so that they open quickly and smoothly in Google Earth. In addition, I have managed to host the files remotely so that they can be accessed from anywhere without being downloaded in their entirety. Even better, Google now provides a ‘gadget’ for viewing the files within a web browser without even opening Google Earth!

So, I have re-packaged the most interesting maps in my collection and uploaded them so that you can explore them for your enjoyment. They can be accessed from a brand new Maps page in The Study section of the site, but for convenience the links are also listed here:

Preparing these maps so that they display clearly in Google Earth is a bit of a challenge, and to this end I’ve experimented with various colour schemes in addition to the bright yellow that I have used in these latest versions. This scheme is probably not perfect for all of the maps, but hopefully it is adequate for research and ‘exploration’ purposes.

I hope you enjoy exploring the maps. And most of all, I hope they work! Hosting Google Earth data in this way is new territory for me, so I won’t be surprised if some technical glitches occur. Please report any problems that you experience when using them.

And stay tuned… there may be more maps coming in the near future!

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