Friday, October 8, 2010

FreeFriday: 1882 map of Wilmington

For Free Friday this week, I offer for your enjoyment, an 1882 wood engraved map showing the 1864 approaches and obstructions to Wilmington, North Carolina. This image is from an 1882 Pictorial History of the United States by Alexander Stephens. I was leafing through this old volume, relishing the textures of the letterpress and the fine detail of the engravings, when I came upon this map, which reminded me of our daughter who is living in Wilmington, completing her Master’s Degree, which lead me to wonder when she, or we, would visit. I would like her to return to Maryland, even though I love Wilmington, a wonderful city that combines colonial and contemporary so well, reminding me so much of my other favorite cities, Frederick in Maryland, and Fredericksburg in Virginia, where I grew up. So many feelings arise from one simple engraving. It is curious how the mind and memory work; one second you are simply admiring the textures of an old book, and then an image fills the mind with emotions; joy, worry, hope, pride, sorrow; all rushing out before calm replaces complexity and returns to the simple act of admiring the textures of an old book. How often we get lost in that rush of emotions and lose hours wandering, wondering and worrying. So many approaches and obstructions, we could certainly use a map.

Give the image a click or two to download the hi-res file.

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