The Atlas of Boston History
with Nancy Seasholes
Few American cities possess a history as long, rich, and fascinating as Boston’s. A site of momentous national political events from the Revolutionary War through the civil rights movement, Boston has also been an influential literary and cultural capital. From ancient glaciers to landmaking schemes and modern infrastructure projects, the city’s terrain has been transformed almost constantly over the centuries. The Atlas of Boston History traces the city’s history and geography from the last ice age to the present with beautifully rendered maps.
Edited by historian Nancy S. Seasholes, this landmark volume captures all aspects of Boston’s past in a series of fifty-seven stunning full-color spreads. Each section features newly created thematic maps that focus on moments and topics in that history. These maps are accompanied by hundreds of historical and contemporary illustrations and explanatory text from historians and other expert contributors. They illuminate a wide range of topics including Boston’s physical and economic development, changing demography, and social and cultural life. In lavishly produced detail, The Atlas of Boston History offers a vivid, refreshing perspective on the development of this iconic American city.
Nancy S. Seasholes is a historian and historical archaeologist. Born in Chicago, she came to the Boston area in 1955 to attend Radcliffe College, from which she received an A.B. cum laude in history in 1959. She then received an A.M.T. in secondary school social studies from the Harvard Graduate School of Education in 1960. She also has M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in archaeology from Boston University in 1984 and 1994 respectively. Nancy is the author of a chapter in Krieger and Cobb, eds., Mapping Boston (MIT 1999) and the sole author of Gaining Ground: A History of Landmaking in Boston (MIT 2003) and Walking Tours of Boston’s Made Land (MIT 2006). She gives talks about and walking tours of Boston, and since 2007 has been working on The Atlas of Boston History—the first historical atlas of Boston.