Chicago Map Society: Greg Prickman, Where in the World was Colonia Munatianae?: The Atlas of Early Printing

Chicago Map Society Meeting
Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Atlas of Early Printing is a new digital resource for the study of the spread of printing through Europe. It is a map-based visualization of historical data, depicting both geography and time. The Atlas will be demonstrated and its development will be traced, in particular how GIS software was used to ensure the accuracy of the map and create the data, which was then translated into a more user-friendly system for its online display. The history of the various maps created in the 20th century that show the spread of printing will be highlighted, and the project will be placed within the context of other digital mapping projects in the humanities.

Greg Prickman (University of Iowa) first began considering a project to depict the spread of printing ten years ago while a student at Indiana University, after encountering a series of maps in a book entitled Annals of Printing. The Atlas of Early Printing combines his interests in traditional bibliography and new digital techniques, which he feels are less in conflict than some might think.