As the saying goes, "A picture is worth a thousand words." This is also the case with maps. From simple hand-drawn sketches to intricately detailed masterpieces, maps can convey immense detail. They can provide the names of places, distances, topography, geographical features, migration routes, land ownership, boundaries and political jurisdictions. Maps allow us to see the physical relationship between places. Maps can help us answer questions – how did our ancestors get from one place to another?
Ginger Frere, MLIS, MBA, is a professional researcher who provides a variety of research services to authors, professional historians, film makers and individuals interested in genealogy. Her primary research interests include Chicago history and the creation of online tools for genealogists. She was one of the driving forces behind the development of ChicagoAncestors.org.