A century of National Geographic maps

Jan 27, 2015

Celebrating the 100th year of the National Geographic cartographic department, they provide a truncated roundup of the thousands of maps they’ve made over the past century. I liked this tidbit about the Germany map above:

Our maps haven’t just chronicled history; they’ve made it. General Dwight D. Eisenhower carried our map of Germany during his 1945 offensive. When a B-17 carrying Admiral Chester Nimitz got lost in a rainstorm, the pilot landed safely using the Society’s map of the Pacific war theater. The map, Nimitz later wrote Gilbert H. Grosvenor, “lent an unexpected but most welcome helping hand.”

It’s true. Maps, even on paper, can be useful.

Favorites

Reviving the Statistical Atlas of the United States with New Data

Due to budget cuts, there is no plan for an updated atlas. So I recreated the original 1870 Atlas using today’s publicly available data.

Who is Older and Younger than You

Here’s a chart to show you how long you have until you start to feel your age.

Real Chart Rules to Follow

There are rules—usually for specific chart types meant to be read in a specific way—that you shouldn’t break. When they are, everyone loses. This is that small handful.

Causes of Death

There are many ways to die. Cancer. Infection. Mental. External. This is how different groups of people died over the past 10 years, visualized by age.