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An Aerial View of New York City Showing How Easily the Weary Traveler May Reach the Herald Square Hotel
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Available to everyone
Title
An Aerial View of New York City Showing How Easily the Weary Traveler May Reach the Herald Square Hotel
Full TItle: An Aerial View of New York City Showing How Easily the Weary Traveler May Reach the Herald Square Hotel Wherein He Will Find the Rest, Comfort & Hospitality to Which He is Entitled, Even in This Day and Age
Work Type
Map published separately
Date
1931
Measurements
(cm, H x W) 21 x 40
ID Number
2270.01
Collector's Notes
Richard Edes Harrison was an American artist whose remarkably innovative maps during World War II and thereafter helped Americans better understand the shrinking world in which they lived. "His techniques defied convention and created a new standard for the look and shape of the world on a map. Harrison designed the maps to be both visually appealing and politically charged, reflecting the urgency of the war while also maintaining an elegant artistic dimension." Schulten 1998, 174. He had been trained in architecture and design rather than as a cartographer, and that background "enabled him to break from convention." Ibid. 175. The collection includes a number of Harrison's maps from the 1940s; for an excellent example, see ID #1297, The World Divided (1941).
Arriving in New York at the beginning of the Depression, Harrison "designed everything from houses and bars to ash trays and whiskey bottles." Ibid. This promotional map for the Herald Square Hotel shows the first signs of the innovation he would apply to war maps a decade later: an unusual bird's-eye view of the city from midtown; attractive architectural renderings of newly-completed landmarks like the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings; stars in the "Theatrical District;" the flamboyant calligraphy and careful use of red only for the Hotel's name; and the curvature of the earth on the horizon, drawing the eye into the map. The finished product is undoubtedly artistic, but with all the practical information the traveler might need, including mass transit connections and directions from the Holland Tunnel. The verso contains more information about the Hotel.
The map is undated, but was likely produced in 1931. The designs for Rockefeller Center were known by 1930, when construction began, and this version of the map shows the complex in rough outline, not with the careful architectural detail Harrison applied to the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings. There is a later version of the map, Rumsey #9725, which is dated 1932 but shows even later developments in the city, including the Lincoln Tunnel (construction begun 1934; first opened 1937) and the "Site of World's Fair" (selected circa 1936).
Type
Map published separately
References
Rights
For important information about copyright and use, see http://persuasivemaps.library.cornell.edu/copyright.
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File Properties
File Name
19343679.fpx
SSID
19343679

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