Booker and Mills Map Collections
Date range: 17th-20th centuries
Number of items: 900 items.
The Booker and Mills collections comprise British and overseas mapping and large scale facsimile reproductions of early world maps and town plans. The main strengths of the collection are English county maps, large-scale mapping of London and Paris, and ornamental examples of French and Dutch mapping of Asia.
The maps originally formed the nucleus of a loan exhibition organized by William H. Barker in the Whitworth Hall in 1923 to stimulate interest in the study of geography, at a time when the University of Manchester was considering the introduction of a Department of Geography. They comprised the collections of Colonel Dudley Mills and Mr R. P. L. Booker, whose maps were loaned by his widow. After the successful exhibition had resulted in the establishment of a Department of Geography, with Mr Barker as its head, Mrs Booker gave permission for her husband's maps, while still on loan, to be made available for the use of students. Subsequently Colonel Mills gave his collection to the University and combined the two collections in one catalogue.
The collection as a whole offers a fascinating insight into the teaching of historical cartography in the early 20th century and provides many examples of landmarks in map making and the evolution of geographical ideas. Many eminent cartographers and a vast range of cartographic styles and techniques are represented in the collection.
Published catalogue, University of Manchester, Catalogue of Historical Maps, arranged by Colonel Dudley Mills (Manchester, 1937).