The Charles Close Society for the study of Ordnance Survey maps

Digital Images Archive

207. Proof copy of quarter-inch (1:253,440) Scotland in Roman Times (CCS 218B/55/4)

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O.G.S. Crawford, the Ordnance Survey's Archaeology Officer between the world wars, was all too aware of the devastation that might befall the Ordnance Survey in the event of war, and his fears proved well founded when German bombs fell on Southampton on 30 November and 1 December 1940. Among the items lost was the print run of his new quarter-inch map, Scotland in Roman Times. Fortunately Crawford had previously taken out some fifty copies from the stock for circulation among libraries and colleagues. And he had already taken steps in May 1940 when he sent copies of four unfinished maps for safe keeping to Professor E.A. Hooton at the Peabody Museum in Harvard. The response to enquiries in the late 1980s to the Museum was that they could find no evidence of these maps, but a copy of one of the four, Scotland in Roman Times (still with the sheet name Roman Britain), has recently been traced in the Harvard Map Collection. Late in the 1930's Crawford began work on his third edition of Roman Britain, which developed into an ambitious project to cover the whole of Roman Britain at the quarter-inch scale, using the new Fourth Edition map as a base. Scotland sheet 3 was the only one to reach completion, though sheet 1 was also ready had not the war intervened. The present proof copy of Scotland sheet 3 is different from the final version in a number of ways: the overprint is red rather than black, there is still a series title rather than a sheet specific one, and one category of overprint detail, Ruins (uncertain), was excluded from the final version. We are grateful to the Harvard Map Collection for providing us with a scan of this probably unique map, and permission to display it here. For further information on this subject, see Roger Hellyer, "The archaeological and historical maps of the Ordnance Survey", Cartographic Journal 26 (December 1989), 111-133, esp. 113ff.

From a copy in the Harvard Map Collection, Pusey Library, Harvard Library.