Graphs from 1900 that depict a snapshot of African American life

In 1900, W. E. B. Du Bois and his students drew a series of charts for The Exhibit of American Negroes. They’re not all winners, but these were hand-drawn in 1900, so there’s some leeway there. There are also a handful of graphics that use graphic devices that we sometimes mistake for modern methods, like cartograms to compare values and a bent bar graph to allow smaller values some space on a zoomed-in axis.

The stacked bar graph above, which shows marital status by age, struck me especially because I made a similar chart for the current population. I am like, so 1900. [via @michalmigurski]


Graphical perception – learn the fundamentals first

Before you dive into the advanced stuff – like just about everything in your life – you have to learn the fundamentals before you know when you can break the rules.

Life expectancy changes

The data goes back to 1960 and up to the most current estimates for 2009. Each line represents a country.

How to Spot Visualization Lies

Many charts don’t tell the truth. This is a simple guide to spotting them.

Shifting Incomes for American Jobs

For various occupations, the difference between the person who makes the most and the one who makes the least can be significant.