'A map of the states of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia comprehending the Spanish provinces of east and west Florida as fixed by the Treaty of Peace between the United States and the Spanish dominions.' photo (c) 2010, Mississippi Department of Archives and History - license: http://www.flickr.com/commons/usage/

I’m not teaching Geography this year, but if I were (and I might again in the future), I’d want to introduce students to some historic maps.

So, for when I do teach that class again, I’ve decided to develop an appropriate “The Best…” list.

Two companion posts to this piece are:

The Best Map-Making Sites On The Web

The Best Websites For Learning & Teaching Geography

Here are my choices for The Best Sites For Learning About Historic Maps (and are accessible to English Language Learners):

Ten of the greatest: Maps that changed the world is a slideshow from the Mail Online.

Historic Maps in K-12 Classrooms has historic maps as well as lesson plans to accompany them.

The David Rumsey Map Collection

Early World Maps comes from Wikipedia.

Why a map is a window on to history is an article from the BBC. It’s not accessible to ELL’s, but it would certainly be useful to teachers.

The World’s Oldest Maps is a nice collection of…the world’s oldest maps.

Here’s a collection of “maps in the form of plants, animals and humans” created in the sixteen and seventeenth century.

Evolution of the Map of Africa is an intriguing collection of…maps.

A History of Map Monsters is a slideshow from Slate.

Old Maps Online lets you type in a location and then it will search through collections of historical maps throughout the world to show you a variety of them for that area. Its interface and accessibility are superb.

A Handsome Atlas

Mapping The Nation

The End Of The Map is an article that accompanies that slideshow.

Oh the Places You’ll Go: 38,000 Historical Maps to Explore at New Online Library is from The Atlantic.

Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States is an impressive interactive site. You can read more about it at The Boston Globe.

18 Maps From When the World Thought California Was an Island is from Wired.

Maps That Changed Our World is a great interactive from The Library of Congress.

More Than 5,000 Historical Maps for Teachers and Students is from Richard Byrne.

First You Make The Maps is well-done interactive showing – and discussing the importance – of multiple early maps.

440 Years Old And Filled With Footprints, These Aren’t Your Everyday Maps is an NPR story – with many images – of an exhibit in Texas showing maps made by indigenous mapmakers in the late 1500’s. You can see more of the maps at an interactive map,Relaciones Geográficas.

Historical Maps from Around the World is from Google Earth.

6 of the World’s Oldest Maps is from Discover.

Story Maps from the Library of Congress don’t exactly fit in with the other links on the “Best” list, but it’s close enough. Here’s how they describe it:

Story Maps at the Library of Congress are immersive web applications that tell the incredible stories of the Library’s collections through narrative, multimedia, and interactive maps

Oculi Mundi

Feedback is welcome, including additional suggestions.

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You might also want to explore the 500 other “The Best…” lists I’ve compiled.