Mapping Maryland

The objective of this course is to examine the history of the mapping of Maryland from the first explorations of a tidal estuary that became known as the Chesapeake Bay (meaning the Great Shell Fish Bay in algonquin) to the finalization of the borders of what today is called Maryland.  There is one text for the course, The Maryland State Archives Atlas of Historical Maps of Maryland, 1608-1908, by Edward C. Papenfuse and Joseph M. Coale, III (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003).   This will be supplemented  with maps, pamphlets, articles, and  document packets available on the web through the teaching portal:, and such excellent web sites as: The Library of Congress, Geography and Map Division, and The David Rumsey private collection of maps on line.  Students are expected to complete the assigned reading before class.  In general the first 11 weeks basic reading will be a chapter a week from the Atlas, beginning the second week of class with Exploration.  Note that one class, that for Wednesday, April 23rd, will be held at the Walters Art Gallery at 2 p.m., lecture,  followed by a tour of the map exhibit.

The basic product requirements of the class are class participation, preparing an article for Wikipedia on an assigned place in Maryland (to be discussed in Seminar), and preparing a Google Earth presentation on the history and mapping of a Baltimore block (not, necessarily THE Block).  Drafts and final presentations with all notes will be due on a USB drive supplied by the instructor, with drafts due by the mid-point of the class, and final products due the night of the last class which will be at the instructor's home.

Participants in the seminar will be expected to take notes for their projects using a Firefox browser, Zotero, and, for PC users, editing and writing tools available at  Mac devotees are free to use similar tools available for the MAC, but should use Zotero with Firefox for note taking and working with Google Earth.  Everyone will be expected to work with the resources of Google Earth for their block history and mapping presentation.


©Dr. Edward C. Papenfuse (instructor)
State Archivist

Office Hours by appointment
Phone: (o) 410-260-6401; (h) 410-467-6137

Internet Address:
Email Address:

Last update: January 27, 2004