Monday, April 02, 2018

All the Houses of London

Large and Accurate Map of the City of London

John Ogilby and William Morgan's 1677 map of London is believed to be the first map to show every building in London in plan (rather than through an oblique bird's eye pictorial view). The map was created in the decade after the Great Fire of London in 1666. The map was originally intended to assist in the planning out of land in the City after the Fire.

The screenshot of the map above shows the plan of the new St. Paul's Cathedral. The old cathedral had been destroyed in the Great Fire of London. Work on the new cathedral had begun in the 1670's (when this map was surveyed) but was not completed until 1711. Ogilby & Morgan's map therefore presumably uses Sir Christopher Wren's plans to show where the completed cathedral would soon stand.

The British Library Georeferencer has an interactive version of the map. On the Georeferencer the Ogilby & Morgan map has been overlaid on top of Google Maps. British History Online also has an interactive Leaflet version of the map.

Horwood's Plan

Horwood's Plan (produced between 1792 and 1799) was the next map to attempt to show every building in London. Horwood had originally planned to include every house number on the map, but this was never completed. The finished map did show every building but the numbering of the buildings was never completed.

Romantic London has created an interactive version of Horwood's Plan. Romantic London's interactive map of Horwoord's Plan includes William Faden's later 1819 revised edition of Horwood's map. You can learn more about Horwood's Plan on Romantic London's Introducing Horwood's Plan.

Charles Booth's Maps Descriptive of London Poverty

In the last two decades of the 19th century the English philanthropist Charles Booth systematically plotted the levels of poverty and wealth in every street in London. He published the results of his research in 'Life and Labour of the People in London'.

The publication included detailed 'Maps Descriptive of London Poverty' in which the levels of poverty and wealth in London were mapped out street by street. 450 notebooks were also completed during the study, in which his researchers wrote detailed descriptions of London's streets and their inhabitants.

On Booth's maps individual buildings in each street are colored to indicate the occupants' social class. You can explore Booth's maps and notebooks of 19th Century London on the LSE's Charles Booth's London website. The maps and notebooks provide an amazing resource into the character and people in each London building in the 19th Century.
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