past time, past place


 Book cover for Past Time, Past Place

Past Time, Past Place is a pioneering text that shows how historians are using GIS technology to take a fresh look at the past. It represents the tremendous range of new historical applications of GIS to historical events, from the Dust Bowl to the Salem witch trials, from Civil War battlefields to the landscapes of the Greek and Roman empires. Leading scholars explain how they have used GIS technology to organize historical research in a geographical context, explore evidence in new ways, map past places and events, and challenge long-standing historical interpretations.

Richly illustrated, Past Time, Past Place makes a vivid supplement to many courses in history, geography, sociology, anthropology, religious studies, and GIS. It will also fascinate arm-chair historians who read history with an atlas at their side.

David Rumsey and Meredith Williams contributed the first chapter of the book, Historical Maps in GIS.

Read Historical Maps in GIS

Past Time, Past Place: GIS for history is now shipping and is available for purchase at both ESRI Press and

about the authors

David Rumsey (Coauthor Chapter 1) is president of Cartography Associates, a digital publishing company based in San Francisco, and a director of Luna Imaging, a provider of enterprise software for online image collections. Mr. Rumsey received his BA and MFA from Yale University where he was a lecturer in art at the Yale Art School for several years. He serves on the boards of the Internet Archive, Samuel H. Kress Foundation, The Long Now Foundation, John Carter Brown Library and the American Antiquarian Society, is a trustee of Yale Library Associates, and is a member of the Stanford University Library Advisory Board.

Meredith Williams (Coauthor Chapter 1) is Associate Planner for the City of Chico, California.  Ms Williams is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles.  She has an extensive knowledge of GIS and its applications in the sciences and humanities, having served as GIS specialist for the Stanford University Libraries for many years.

about the editor

Anne Kelly Knowles is a historical geographer who teaches at Middlebury College. She has edited volumes of essays on historical GIS, including Past Time, Past Place: GIS for History (ESRI Press 2002). Her first book, Calvinists Incorporated: Welsh Immigrants on Ohio's Industrial Frontier, was a study of the influence of Welsh Calvinist religion on immigrants' involvement in American capitalism. She is now writing a book titled Hard as Iron: Geography, Labor, and Technology in the Struggle to Modernize the U.S. Iron Industry, 1800-1868.