Uptown time traveler

View of North Tryon Street, looking north from The Square. Photo courtesy Charlotte Mecklenburg Library

How has uptown Charlotte changed in the past century? Launch the map below for an interactive graphic that depicts the dramatic change since 1911. A century ago, uptown's urban pattern was fine-grained, with numerous small buildings on small lots.

Today that fine-grained fabric has been lost. The modern projects have giant-sized footprints, often taking up a whole block (launch map using link below). The map has photos of historic spots, and what's there today.  To explore in greater detail, visit Charlotte1911.org.

You may also view the interactive graphic as part of  a touch screen display in the lobby of Levine Museum of the New South, produced in cooperation with the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute and the Renaissance Computing Institute at UNC Charlotte.

The time-travel map is based on work done in a collaboration between the Levine Museum and UNC Chapel Hill University Library called Main Street, Carolina. Included in that collaboration is a larger set of data on the center of Charlotte circa 1911 that allows you to explore where people lived and what kinds of work they did. 

The underlying map from 1911 comes from the The Sanborn Map Company, (today known as Sanborn) which produced specialized maps for fire insurance companies for decades after its founding in 1866.  Those maps contain rich information that has been of great interest to historians.  For more on these maps and how they are being used: http://www.loc.gov/rr/geogmap/sanborn/san4a1.html

 

Launch Map