Monday, August 3, 2015

A Map That Changed the World

200 years ago today, geologist William Smith published the first geological map of Britain.  Using color, he was able to accurately depict the various rock formations, both horizontally and vertically.  For years, he traveled Britain, surveying the land and taking extensive notes.  This culminated in "the map that changed the world," which was published in 1815.  Despite his profound contribution to the field of geology, Smith spent much of his life unrecognized for his work.  He was plagiarized, cheated, and even spent time in debtors' prison.  It would be fifteen years before he would be awarded the honors he deserved, as well as a lifetime pension.

For more information on Smith's story and the effects it had on modern geology, be sure to check out The Map That Changed the World by Simon Winchester!

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