Thomas Strother's tomb in Guiseley churchyard



       The German canal map

             See larger image


I am currently working on a number of different projects, with varying degrees of attention to them, as follows:

  1. I'm actively engaged at present on a study of the Customary English mile using data published by John Ogilby in his Britannia (see tab 'Published by David I. Bower'). Of particular interest is the extent to which it seems to have varied in length through England and Wales.

  2. Also under active investigation is an eighteenth century German map of the Leeds and Liverpool canal. As well as the map itself, of particular interest are the author of the work in which it was published and the engraver of the map. Both of these were involved in the production of other important maps in the eighteenth century.

  3. The life and work of a little-known Yorkshire mapmaker, Thomas Strother (1695-1767), who acted as agent for a number of land-owners in the area to the northwest of Leeds, especially Sir Walter Calverley. Two maps produced for Sir Walter and signed by Strother are at the Yorkshire Archaeological Society and there are other more sketchy maps there that are probably by him. Other members of Thomas's family were of some minor importance in the Leeds area and he himself became the founder of the branch of the  family who became known as 'the squires' of Killinghall, a village  a few miles north of Harrogate. See photos of his tomb at left and a short article under the 'Cartographic publications' tab.
  4. A study of the latitudes and longitudes given by John Speed in his Britannia. Where did they come from, how accurate were they and how do they relate to those given by other authors in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries?
  5. A detailed investigation of the map of the parish of Bolton Percy, dated c.1596, held at the Borthwick Institute at the Universiy of York. The map is actually three maps at different scales on a total of 38 sheets, bound as an atlas. The map at the highest scale has details of individual strips in the the open fields. The map has sometimes been attributed to Christopher Saxton, but this attribution seems to me unlikely to be correct for a number of reasons.

  6. A study of the relationships among the Weston map tapestries and their relationships to Saxton's maps.