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Devon maps publications

Early Devon Maps

A selection of large scale manuscript maps of Devon before 1700

Edited by Mary R. Ravenhill and Margery M. Rowe

Manuscript maps are among the most used documents in local record offices and so it is fitting that the first publication of the Friends of Devon's Archives should be devoted to this topic. The tithe map may often be the earliest map of a complete parish and any earlier maps, which may be of a single property or estate, are treated usually as a bonus. The South West counties have not been considered rich in the survival of these earlier manuscript maps. Over the past four and a half years, Mary Ravenhill and Margery Rowe have been engaged on a systematic examination and description of pre 1840 maps for Devon and the number found in local record offices and in private hands is significant. As a first offering, 25 of these early maps, dating from circa 1550 to 1700, have been published in reduced facsimile. The earliest map in the collection is a map of Dartmoor made in the middle of the 16th century; there is a corpus of Exeter maps drawn by John Hooker and Robert Sherwood for the period 1568-1633 and also included is a map of Grange in Bideford produced by the well-known map maker Joel Gascoyne. A glebe terrier (survey of church land) of 1601 shows land in Shirwell in north Devon. Most of the maps are in the custody of the Devon Heritage Centre in Exeter or the North Devon Record Office in Barnstaple but there is also a map of Kentisbeare which is in the Somerset Record Office, as well as a map of Exeter Castle in the British Library and examples from The National Archives.

These maps provide information on the Devon landscape and its agricultural practices and on buildings and street plans in Tudor and Stuart times, as well as being some of the most visually attractive items in the record office.

This was the first volume to be published under the auspices of the FRIENDS OF DEVON'S ARCHIVES but all copies have been sold and it is now out of print.

Maps of Georgian Devon

Edited by Mary R. Ravenhill and Margery M. Rowe

This companion volume to Early Devon Maps was published in March 2003. More than 20 maps are reproduced from the eighteenth century, the heyday of estate mapping. They include estates of landowners such as the Dean and Chapter of Exeter and the Courtenay, Acland and Fortescue families, as well as a map of the Exe estuary and one showing the allotment of lands under a 'private' enclosure award in Hemyock in 1709.

Maps of Georgian Devon is available for 10 sterling, or 12 including U.K. postage and packing.

Please send a cheque made payable to "Friends of Devon's Archives", to Friends of Devon's Archives, Devon Heritage Centre, Great Moor House, Bittern Road, Sowton, Exeter, Devon, EX2 7NL, U.K. For orders from outside the United Kingdom, please add 2 sterling per book for overseas postage.

Maps of Georgian Devon can be purchased online from Stevens Books (opens in new window).

A more detailed two-volume book on Devon Maps and Mapmakers to 1840 by Mary Ravenhill and Margery Rowe was published in autumn 2002 by the Devon and Cornwall Record Society, and is available for 40 from the Record Society or from Devon Heritage Centre.

Friends of Devon's Archives' publications are distributed by Stevens Books (opens in new window).