Easy Access to Days Gone By With Old Maps Online

By Gary Cutlack on at

Old Maps Online is exactly that -- a searchable database of historical maps, giving users an idea of what a lovely place where they live used to be before 1960s planners got hold of it.

A joint project between the Great Britain Historical GIS Project at Portsmouth University and Klokan Technologies, the search engine comes with a sliding bar that lets you set the time period of its results, with results presented in a high-res format so you can really zoom in to street level. If the street even existed back in 1798.

The hope is to gather together all maps from famous private collections, the British and Scottish national libraries and more, then blend it all with the Google Maps API so it's easy and familiar to use.

All we need now is some sort of accompanying set of images from a horse-drawn Street View vehicle. [Old Maps Online via The Verge -- Thanks Darrell]