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Brand: Rose Mitchell & Andrew Janes

Maps Their Untold Stories

by Rose Mitchell & Andrew Janes

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Maps Their Untold Stories : Map Treasures From The National Archives

A map is a snapshot of a place, a city, a nation or even the world at a given point in time - fascinating for what they tell us about the way our ancestors saw themselves, their neighbours and their place in the world. This magnificent collection, drawn from seven centuries of maps held in the National Archives at Kew, looks at a variety of maps, from those found in 14th Century manuscripts, through early estate maps, to sea charts, maps used in military campaigns, and maps from treaties. The text explores who the mapmakers were, the purposes for which the maps were made, and what it tells us about the politics of the time.

Great images are accompanied by compelling stories. Featured is a woodcut map of 16th Century London, a map of where the bombs fell during the Second World War, and a map the first American settlers' drew when they were attempting to establish a new empire on Roanoke Island, off the coast of what is now North Carolina. Richly illustrated with large scale reproductions of the maps, the book also includes some of the more amusing or esoteric maps from the National Archives, such as the map of the Great Exhibition in 1851 that was presented on a lady's glove, a London Underground map in the form of a cucumber, and a Treasure Island map used to advertise National Savings.

This is a fascinating and unusual journey through the world of maps and mapmakers.

Secrets of The National Archives : The Stories Behind the Letters and Documents of Our Past

The National Archives is one of the most remarkable collections of documents in the world, holding over 120 miles of papers. In 2010 the staff at the Archives were asked to select their favourite document. The results of this poll form the basis of this book, skilfully curated by bestselling author Richard Taylor.

Each of the documents has a timeless quality, acting as a true testament to a moment in history. The Magna Carta is a document sealed in a damp field in Surrey, yet is deferred to centuries later by Governments and Courts around the world; a parchment letter written by a terrified young girl pleading for her life paves the way for the girl to become Elizabeth I; the first example of musical notation is discovered on the back of another document; the actual telegram sent from a sinking Titanic remains heart-rending today; a ship's log written by Captain Cook, at anchor in Botany Bay, records his first encounter with Australian Aborigines. Far from being dusty documents from the past, these papers twinkle with life and resonate powerfully today.

Fully illustrated, this book allows us to glimpse history as it really happened.

For real fans of The National Archives we have a special gift bundle of our most recent publications offered at the bargain price of £60 (RRP £87.90). This includes copies of Secrets of The National Archives, Maps Their Untold Stories, Inventions That Didn't Change the World and Keep Britain Tidy.

Staff Reviews

Maps, their untold stories is a fantastic showcases of the breadth and depth of our incredible map collection and an excellent example of colleagues working together to produce a high quality publication which will be of interest to a huge range of people. Jeff James Keeper of the National Archives