Maps at the Brooklyn Historical Society

On our fourth trip to the Brooklyn Historical Society we started off with a tour of maps led by a woman named Caroline. The first map was a 2011 subway station map. After we looked at 8 other maps oldest one dated back to 1570 over 400 years old. We learned that cartoons on a map were called a cartoosh and to always orient the map with the compass rose pointing north. Most maps have information on the back so its important to always check. Also most maps but not all have neat lines.¬†Brooklyn didn’t become apart of NYC until 1898. There was a 1940s color coating maps to tell for example prices of rent much like the sensuous which was called a data map. The final map was a 1970 subway map which was very controversial¬† schematic map. It was an attractive map but you couldn’t tell where you had¬† to get off, it wasn’t very functional.

The second subject we discussed was disease. We learned during the 19th century in NYC there was waste all in the streets this caused an spreed in sickness and death. People contracted many viruses like yellow fever in the late 1700s around 1790s. The street were crowded with no regular sanitation. The natural boundary between Brooklyn and NYC saved Brooklyn from diseases. In 1842 there was an outbreak of Collera many died due to coming in contact with feces. After the city tried to help people by putting more parks in crowded areas so people could breathe.

Then we broke up into groups.The group i was in looked at a sewer map. It was made to show sewers for house drainage. It was created by Vanbrunt Burgen CE( Civil Engineer) on July 22nd 1890. Created by the Board of Street and Sewer Commissionary. It was notarized in Flatbush.It was handwritten displaying sections with hatches of sewers and man holes. Much similar to the hatches we see in today’s architecture plans. They used something like 20 penny nails. Also we learned what culvert was, it used to channel water mainly under roads, railways, and embankment. That concluded our fourth trip to the BHS.

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