DRMC: Amazing “U.S. Atlas for the Blind”

Full set at the David Rumsey Map Collection icon

The Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind

Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind
Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind image detail
Date: 1837
Author: Cray, Howe & Ruggles
Dwnld: Full Size 01 || 02
Source: DRMC
Print Availability:
Print Availability f
See our Prints Page for more details
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This map isn't part of any series, but we have other featured maps that you might want to check out.

The good folks over at the peerless David Rumsey Map Collection have just done it again, producing this set from the Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind (1837). What you see here is the tip of the iceberg, and you should absolutely check out the full set (here's the overview, and here are the maps themselves).

While the now-familiar Braille system of writing had been developed by the time of these maps' publication, it was far from widely-adopted. I was surprised to learn that it was (is) one of many different systems of tactile alphabets that have long vied for popularity. This set offers a type of embossed roman type that has since fallen into disfavor.

These are gorgeous, and I feel lucky to have come across them. We all have DRMC to thank for that. It's stuff like this that is pretty much the reason that I started this blog. Thanks to those who took steps to digitize and preserve this... it's given me a lot of thought. It's late, here, and I'm gonna go ponder this as I go to bed. Posting this first thing tomorrow morning. I'll let you know if I have any revelations between now and then.

UPDATE: I layed in bed and instead pondered the significance of the St. Louis Cardinals nearly dropping their 5th game in a row. No significant revelations were had; about either the Narnies or the map. You probably didn't miss much, though -- writing about maps has never been my strong suit, anyway -- if you're lucky, maybe Frank Jacobs would like to pick this up and run with it.



The Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind square thumbnail image