Explore Richmond, Virginia in 1876, a decade after the end of the Civil War compared to present day Richmond. Wonderful details of buildings and their owners, parks and public buildings over-layed with a current aerial image of the city. Pan around and explore the city and use the "Scratch Off" button to see what has changed from 1876 to present day. Hit the swap button below to reverse the layers and the Pan & Zoom Map icon to move around and zoom.
Map by @justinmadron
A map by @justinmadron
Richmond was a very different place a decade after the Civil War than it is today. When we started working on the Visualizing the Past project for the Library of Virginia, we found a wonderful atlas of Richmond in 1876. This hand painted atlas, published by F.W Beers, features detailed buildings and their owners, parks and public landmarks. These maps served as our basemap for the project because of the great detail they provided. While working on the project I became really interested in what has changed around Richmond since this time.
Full Disclosure: This code was adapted from Chris Whong. The map is loading two layers. The bottom layer is a normal leaflet.js TileLayer. The top layer makes use of leaflet's Canvas TileLayer, essentially setting up a grid of 256x256 HTML canvases. For each canvas, a tile image is requested from the top layer, and is drawn into the canvas. When the user "Scratches" the canvas, they are drawing into the canvas using the 'destination-out' composite operation. This turns the affected area transparent, allowing the bottom layer to show through! Tiles were generated for the historical map using gdal2tiles.py. Here's a blog post about how and why Chris Whong built Urban Scratchoff.
The historical imagery is provided by David Rumsey's Map Collection site - "Illustrated Atlas Of The City Of Richmond, Va. Published for the Southern and Southwestern Surveying and Pub. Co. By F.W. Beers, C.E. J.A. Enslow, Jr., J.P. Brown, Business Managers ... Entered ... 1876 by F.W. Beers ... Washington ."
The modern day imagery is Mapquest's OpenAerial tileset