Map collection



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This collection comprises maps of Australia's ever expanding road network, produced by specialist Australian publishers and fuel companies . It includes early metropolitan road maps, interstate touring maps and street directories.

This collection documents the growth in number and detail of road maps across Australia throughout the twentieth century. Often early motor vehicle journeys were conducted with the most basic of maps, which had been either drawn by hand or utilised what were known as 'survey' maps, principally intended to legitimise land claims. As the number of motor vehicles increased, so did the requirement for better maps. Initially maps of the road network within the major cities were considered to be of primary importance. The collection charts the expansion of networked road maps from the cities to outlying and regional areas as owners of motor vehicles began venturing further afield. While European settlers had moved into the remote and regional area long before the advent of motor vehicles, this collection of maps helps to demonstrate how quickly motor vehicles became an important tool in the 'conquest of the bush'. [np] Interstate road network information, road conditions, petrol supplies, and historical and scenic locations were all included. Once there were major roads established between the larger cities, accurate information about the road conditions and petrol supplies were also required. Touring maps, indicating major interstate roads and conditions as well as petrol supplies, became increasingly important to those planning a motoring journey. The collection reveals how fuel companies capitalised on the advertising opportunities presented by touring maps, with commissioned maps supplied to travellers at petrol outlets. These maps not only included petrol stations on route, but also indicated historical or scenic stops for the entertainment of the traveller, affording insight into the social history of motoring.

A National Motor Museum collection. Access to collection items held in Museum Stores is by appointment only.


Advertising; Cartography; Maps; Road Network; Travelling

Maps; Road maps; Street directories

Maps; Road vehicles

National Motor Museum, South Australia

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2012-05-30 23:40

2011-03-04 13:46