Two centuries of map-making – from William Smith’s survey to satellites

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


This year marks the 200th anniversary since William Smith published his life’s work, a geological map of England and Wales, in 1815. While “Strata Smith” and his map are well-known among geologists, this humble man and his amazing map do not receive the attention or wider recognition they deserve. Smith’s achievement was arguably as significant as Darwin’s, yet he resides in relative obscurity.
Original languageEnglish
Specialist publicationThe Conversation
PublisherThe Conversation UK
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jan 2015

Bibliographical note

John Howell's research is currently funded by the Norwegian Research Council and a consortium of Oil Companies, details are available at


  • Geology
  • Mapping
  • Google Maps
  • Topography


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