The pictorial map indicated here represent American visual art that is underappreciated. They are intended to attract and sell something like enjoying a tropical vacation or a brand of whiskey.It’s like selling the illustrated maps to pursue an American dream.
According to a professor of geography from the University of Maine, Stephen Hornsby, pictorial maps long started in the country since 1920 uptill 1960. He also authors a book, Picturing America: The Golden Age of Pictorial Maps, where he says, “It’s an indication of tremendous vitality of American pop culture.”
Some of the maps indicated in his book were used by companies to advertise what they had. Other maps were designedfor the local chambers of commerce and state tourist boards to attract commerce and tourists to their area. Others were drawn to attract schoolchildren and spark their interest in places and people.
The illustrated maps are geographically correct; while others make a point or to show simplicity. A 1947 map squeezes in the central and eastern America, and adds it inside the Los Angeles bounds. A bold yellow arrow links the Golden State to New York City, claiming 200 enjoyable miles.
A giant “Kissing sun” and an angelic forecaster lookon California, which has attractions from other areas, including Mount Everest, Grand Canyon, and Niagara Falls.
Pictorial maps weren’t really a serious topic of study for the degree holder in geography. Hornsby collected few illustrated maps here and there while focusing on his career. A 2013 sabbatical provided him a possibility to return and do research for his book.
Pictorial mapping pursued to prosper during World War II and the Depression. But in the 1960s, photography boomed the American advertising, and several illustrators were displaced in their careers. Although there are few artists and cartographers still drawingnowadays, the genre never regained back its prior popularity.
As featured in the gallery, you can visualize small illustrations of more than 150 maps found in the book Hornsby authored. Small samples of hundreds of pictorial maps are now kept in the Library of Congress. According to Hornsby, “The book is a large mass of illustrated maps.”