Tuesday, May 2, 2017, 5:30
Mark Monmonier presents The Four Shorelines of Coastal Cartography
Leventhal Map Center, Boston Public Library
700 Boylston Street, Boston Massachusetts
The history of coastal cartography chronicles the emergence of four distinct representations of the land-water boundary, the oldest of which is the high-water line, captured initially in the offshore sketches of mariners and global explorers and used for centuries for marine navigation and for framing continents on geographical maps. The second shoreline is the low-water line, which marks the horizontal position of the tidal or sounding datum and plays an integral role in the representation of near-shore hazards on large-scale nautical charts. The third and fourth shorelines reify two additional coastal dangers, storm surge and sea level rise. All four cartographic shorelines have multiple definitions and multiple applications. The third shoreline, particularly relevant to Hurricane Sandy’s attack on Long Island and New Jersey in October 2012, informs flood-insurance maps, evacuation plans, and land-use restrictions, while the fourth shoreline helps rally support for reducing carbon emissions as well as for comparing approaches to wetlands management. Heavily dependent on numerical modeling and an evolving scientific understanding of physical processes, these latter two categories exemplify the emergence of time as a cartographic frontier in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, when earn-systems forecasting became an important mapping application.
Tuesday, May 23, 2017, 5:30 (NOTE NEW DATE)
David Weimer, Harvard Map Collection, Harvard Yard
Manuscript Maps: Hand Drawn Treasures from the Harvard Map Collection