A rare early copy of William Smith’s 1815 Geological Map of England and Wales, previously thought lost, has been uncovered by Geological Society archivists. The new map has been digitised and made available online in time for the start of celebrations of the map’s 200th anniversary, beginning with an unveiling of a plaque at Smith’s former residence by Sir David Attenborough.
The map, the first geological map of a nation ever produced, shows the geological strata of England, Wales and part of Scotland. The newly discovered copy is thought to have been one of the first ten produced by William Smith (1769-1839), who went on to produce an estimated 370 hand-coloured copies of the map in his lifetime.
Now fully restored and digitised, images of the new map can be viewed on the Geological Society’s image library from March 23 – William Smith’s birthday. It will also be on display at the Geological Society during a number of events celebrating the map’s bicentennial.
Images Now Online: Archivists Unearth Rare First Edition of ‘The Map that Changed the World’
Filed by March 23, 2015on