The ICA Commission on the History of Cartography and the German Archaeological Institute (DAI) – Department Istanbul will hold the 8th International Symposium on the History of Cartography  in Istanbul from April 21 to 23, 2020.

This edition is titled Mapping the Ottoman Realm: travelers, cartographers and archaeologists and is open to anyone who has an interest in mapping the (former) Ottoman countries between the 16th and 19th centuries, although other periods will also be accepted. The symposium will focus on two main themes:

  • Cartography of the Ottoman countries in Europe, Asia and Africa
  • Cartography of archaeological sites, landscapes and excavations of the Ottoman Empire in the 19th and 20th centuries

On the symposium website you can find information about accepted presentations, online registration and practical details to attend.

Online registration is now open.

The provisional program of the 8 Ibero-American Cartography History Symposium (SIAHC), which will be held in Barcelona from April 21 to 24, 2020, is now available.

It will be organized by the Institut Cartogràfic i Geològic de Catalunya (ICGC) with the collaboration of the Grup d'Estudis d'Història de la Cartografia (GEHC).

The theme chosen for this occasion is the map as an element of cultural connection between America and Europe. It will discuss colonial maps, maps of scientific expeditions or maps of independent territories, which share history, technique and uses. In the symposium we propose to address these threads that weave a common history among Latin American cartography.

Registration to the SIAHC is free.

On Tuesday, February 25, at 11:00 in the Aula Magna of the Faculty of Geography and History, our GEHC companion, Bárbara Polo Martín, will defend her thesis History of urban cartography of Burgos: 19th and 20th centuries.

The central hypothesis is that the urban planimetry since the end of the 19th century in Burgos, which is characterized by high precision, large scale and detailed representation of the parcels, leveling and alignments, is born from the confluence of three cartographic models concrete: urban military topography, cadastral planimetry and urban mapping. Of the 69 maps and plans located, the most numerous block is that of military cartography, with a total of 53 maps. Next, comes the block of urban cartography with 16 and cadastral cartography we have not been able to rescue more than those surrounding the map made by the National Geographic Institute in 1912, which are only the field worksheets.

The thesis is expected to act as a pioneer in the field of urban cartographic analysis from the geographical and historical points of view in Castilla y León and generate the birth of scientific and social networks of various kinds that contribute to the knowledge of our cultural and heritage resources, eminently of a cartographic nature, by facilitating access to this information in a qualified and innovative way.

The thesis has been directed by the members of GEHC, Dr. José Luis Urteaga González and Dr. Francesc Nadal Piqué.

The Diccionari de mapes parcel·laris i agrimensors a Catalunya(segles XVIII-XIX) prepared by the Grup d'Estudis d'Història de la Cartografia (GEHC) is now available for consultation.

This dictionary aims to be a contribution to the study of a professional group that has carried out an important cartographic, statistical and geographical work in Catalonia: that of land surveyors, canadors, destradors or geometers. They are the heirs of a documented practice in Catalonia, at least, since the end of the 13th century. The main thrust was received from the implementation of the Bourbon Cadastre from 1716.

At this time we start from information regarding 350 maps and 427 authors of the eighteenth and nineteenth century collected from 489 bibliographic references.

For authors and bibliographical references, literal searches can be performed. For maps, you can opt for the literal search using place names or the map search.

The basic information that has allowed to build this dictionary has been the historical documentation gathered by different members of the GEHC throughout three research projects subsidized, between 2001 and 2011, by the 
Dirección General de Investigación. The ambition of the dictionary is to continue enriching itself with the results of new research and also with the contributions that we want to be sent through the Contacte section.

Within the framework of the research work Coloured Maps (2018-2021) financed by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), several institutions in Hamburg organize a conference to deal with the material substrate and the meaning of colours from different cultural approaches in cartography.

We will talk about maps and colours, methods and discourses, colourants and analytical approaches. The debate will focus on European and Asian cartography between the 15th and 19th centuries. Other cases of interest will also be welcome.

The conference will take place on November 5 and 6.

The deadline for submitting work proposals is March 1, 2020. The proposals must be in English, about 500 words maximum, along with a one-page curriculum. They should be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more details you can consult the announcement or download the Call for papers.

From January 30 to April 19, 2020, the exhibition Mapes, país, futur: centenari de l'exposició cartogràfica Catalana (1919) [Maps, country, future: centenary of the Catalan cartographic exhibition (1919)] can be visited at the Museu d'Història de Catalunya. 

The centenary of the exhibition organized by the Centre Excursionista de Catalunya in 1919 is commemorated. Many of the maps are the same as those exhibited. On that occasion, the objective was to provide cartographic documentation that would facilitate the drawing of a new territorial division of Catalonia in regions called comarques.

In addition to the edition of a catalog of the exhibition (download PDF), a series of conferences has been organized to be held at the same headquarters of the museum and which will be preceded by a guided tour of the exhibition:

  • Natural risks and cartography (February 5, 6pm)
  • Geological heritage (February 19, 6pm)
  • Territorial delimitation and cartography (March 4, 6pm)
  • New ways of observing the Earth (March 18, 6pm)
  • Digital cartographic information resources for hikers (April 1, 6pm)
  • Discovery of the territory. Hiking and orientation: tools (April 15, 6pm)

For more information you can visit the website of the exhibition, which has been organized by the Institut Cartogràfic i Geològic de Catalunya (ICGC) in collaboration with the Centre Excursionista de Catalunya (CEC), the Museu d'Història de Catalunya (MHC) and with the sponsorship of Hitachi.

Next Wednesday, January 29, 2020, at 6:30 p.m., the posthumous book by Tomàs Vidal: Enciclopèdia de Menorca. Tom vint-i-unè. Cartografia històrica will be presented at the Pi i Sunyer Room of the Institut d'Estudis Catalans (Carme, 47, Barcelona) as an act in memory of GEHC member Tomàs Vidal (1941-2019).

They will intervene:

Vicenç M. Rosselló i Verger, member of the GEHC and honorary professor of the University of Valencia;

Francesc Nadal Piqué, member of the GEHC and professor of Human Geography of the University of Barcelona; and

Miquel Àngel Casasnovas Camps, president of the Fundació Enciclopèdia de Menorca.

Within the documentary series Guardianes del Patrimonio  produced by RTVE, we want to highlight this episode broadcast by La2 on January 18, 2020.

It deals about the theft of, among other documents, two world maps extracted from two incunabula of Ptolemy's work in August 2007.

The documents were recovered, with some damage, and the culprits were identified.

The Commission on Cartographic Heritage into the Digital of the International Cartographic Association (ICA) organizes, in collaboration with the Department of Cartography and Geoinformatics, ELTE Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, a conference to discuss the state of the art in automatic vectorization of old maps, with particular emphasis on the use of free and open source solutions.

The Workshop Automatic vectorisation of historical maps will take place in Budapest on March 13, 2020.

All submitted works will be published online and a selection will be in a special issue of e-Perimetron.

Registration is free until February 25 by filling out this questionnaire.

The Fuller projection, or Dymaxion Map, can also be a great Christmas ornament. Seen in The Map Room and made by John Nelson.