Doing My Bit for Ireland

Margaret Skinnider (circa 1893‒1971) was born in Scotland to Irish parents. She trained as a teacher and taught mathematics in Glasgow, Scotland, before resigning her position to go to Dublin to take part in the Easter Rising of April 1916. Skinnider’s Doing My Bit for Ireland, published in the United States in 1917, is her account of her revolutionary activities in 1915 and 1916. She begins by telling the story of her first trip to Dublin, in 1915, when she smuggled detonators for bombs into Ireland for use by the nationalists. This is followed by a more extensive narrative of her role in the Easter Rising. Skinnider carried ammunition, served as a dispatch rider, and was a sniper. After spending seven weeks in the hospital recovering from three gunshot wounds suffered in the uprising, she managed to avoid arrest and to make her way back to Glasgow. During a brief return to Ireland in August 1916, she was trailed by a detective and fled to the United States, where in 1917‒18 she campaigned for the cause of Irish independence. The book is illustrated and contains, in addition to Skinnider’s narrative, facsimile copies of important documents relating to the events of April 1916, including the proclamation of an Irish republic by the provisional government, stamps issued by the republic during its brief existence, the last proclamation issued by Padraic Pearse, president of the republic, and Pearse’s surrender document of April 29, 1916. The book concludes with the lyrics to the songs sung by Irish volunteers before and after the Easter Rising. After her stay in the United States, Skinnider returned to Ireland and was active in the Cummann na mBan, the women’s auxiliary to the Irish Republican Army.

The Insurrection in Dublin

The Easter Rising of April 1916 was an attempt by Irish nationalists to provoke a nationwide rebellion and thereby secure Ireland’s independence from British rule. In fighting that was largely confined to Dublin, 60 insurgents and 130 troops and police were killed, along with 300 civilians caught in the crossfire. In the aftermath of the uprising the British executed another 15 conspirators, including Sir Roger Casement, a Protestant who had become an ardent Irish nationalist and who had sought to acquire weapons for the insurgents from Germany, Britain’s enemy in World War I, underway at that time. The Insurrection in Dublin is an account of the Easter Rising by the poet and novelist James Stephens (1882‒1950), a leading figure in the Irish literary revival of the early 20th century and a supporter of Irish independence. Stephens witnessed firsthand the events described in the book, and many of those killed were his friends and colleagues. The book begins with a strictly chronological account, with seven successive chapters devoted to the events of Monday, April 24 through Sunday, April 30. The remaining five chapters deal with the ending of the insurrection, the volunteers who took part in it, its leaders, the role of labor during the insurrection, and “The Irish Questions.” In this final chapter, Stephens argues that there are two Irish questions, an international question concerning the independence of the country, and a national question relating to relations between Catholics and Protestants on the island. The Easter Rising became a rallying point for Irish nationalists and eventually led to the Anglo-Irish Treaty of December 1921, followed shortly after by establishment of the Irish Free State and the partition of Ireland. The edition of The Insurrection in Dublin presented here was published in New York in 1916.

History of the Sinn Fein Movement and the Irish Rebellion of 1916

Sinn Fein (Gaelic for “We Ourselves”) was founded to promote the cultural revival and political independence of Ireland. History of the Sinn Fein Movement and the Irish Rebellion of 1916 is a detailed history of the movement, written by Francis P. Jones, a former member of the movement who had immigrated to the United States from Ireland. The book covers the period from the founding of Sinn Fein in Dublin in 1905 to the Easter Rising of April 1916. It deals with the economic, cultural, religious, and political aspects of Irish independence, as well as the twists and turns of British policy and the debates in Parliament over Home Rule. More than half of the book is a detailed account of the Easter Rising, based on documentary sources and the first-hand accounts of men involved in the fighting who had fled to the United States. The final chapters deal with the aftermath of the uprising, including the trial and execution of its leaders. A chapter on the “Women of the Nation” is by the author’s wife, to whom the book is dedicated. The introduction is by John W. Goff (1848‒1924), an immigrant from Ireland who was prominent in New York as a lawyer and judge. The appendix, “Ireland’s Roll of Honor,” contains a complete list of the names of the men killed in the fighting of April 1916 and of those sentenced to penal servitude, hard labor, or prison. The appendix concludes with details of the numbers of men deported and jailed without trial.

The Province of Tierra Firme and the New Kingdom of Granada and Popayán

This map of 1631 by Willem Janszoon Blaeu (1571–1638) shows Central America and the northwestern part of South America, including all or parts of Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela. A Dutch text on the reverse of the map explains the geography of the regions depicted, which encompassed the Spanish viceroyalty of New Granada and the province of Popayán, which took its name from the colonial city located at the foot of Volcán Puracé in the Cordillera Central of the Andes. The map shows rivers and other geographic features, along with towns and missions. Relief is shown pictorially. The map has two distance scales, Spanish leagues and German miles. Blaeu places a hand-colored compass rose in the Caribbean Sea (labeled the Northern Ocean, the term for the Atlantic in use at the time), and another, slightly larger one in the Pacific (labeled the Southern Ocean). The title, scales, Blaeu’s signature, and other information on the map are in Latin, but place-names are in Spanish. Blaeu was a leading Dutch cartographer and map publisher and the founder of a family of distinguished mapmakers that included his sons Joan and Cornelis. Born in the Netherlands in 1571, between 1594 and 1596 Blaeu studied in Denmark under the astronomer Tycho Brahe, where he developed skills as an instrument and globe maker. Upon returning to Amsterdam, he founded the family map company. In 1608 he was appointed chief hydrographer of the Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie (United East Indian Company), a position he held until his death. The use of the compass rose and the careful marking of capes, islands, and shallows along the coasts reflect his interest in marine cartography.

Comparative View of the Extent and Population of the Colonial Possessions of Great Britain and Other Powers

This map shows the extent of the British and the other European empires at the time it was published, in 1829. Different colors are used to indicate the colonial possessions of Great Britain, France, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Sweden. A table at the bottom lists all of the possessions of these seven powers, their size in square miles, populations, and exports to and imports from their respective mother countries (in pounds sterling). Britain’s overall trade with its colonies was roughly in balance, but this was the result of a large deficit with the West Indies (largely accounted for by imports of sugar) being offset by large surpluses with the other colonies. The table in the lower right gives the populations of both the British colonies and the major foreign powers, along with British exports to them and per capita levels of consumption. The population of the United States is given as 12 million, that of Russia, the largest country in Europe, as 56.5 million. The map itself shows the extent of European imperial expansion in 1829. The scramble for Africa had not yet begun, and European colonies in Africa were, apart from the Cape of Good Hope (present-day South Africa), little more than coastal outposts. The Hudson’s Bay Territory (much of present-day Canada) is shown as extending into several states of the American Pacific Northwest, reflecting British claims to this territory that were not abandoned until 1846, when the U.S.– Canada border was set by treaty at 49° North. The map was produced by James Wyld (1790–1836), geographer to the king and founder of a map-publishing firm that was carried on by his son, James Wyld the Younger (1812–87).

The Kingdom of Ireland, Divided as Much into the Main Regions of Ulster, Connacht, Leinster and Munster

This hand-colored map of Ireland was published in 1715 by the firm of Nuremberg engraver and publisher Johann Baptist Homann (1663–1724). It is based on earlier works by Nicolaes Visscher (1649-1702), of the second of three generations of Visschers who were art dealers and map publishers in Amsterdam, and Sir William Petty (1623–87), the pioneering English political economist who directed the nationwide cadastral survey of Ireland carried out under Oliver Cromwell in 1656–58. The map is in Latin, but place-names are in English and the original Celtic renderings into English. It has a decorative title cartouche and a scale cartouche. Four distance scales are provided: German, French, English, and Irish miles. Different colors are used to show the four historic provinces of Ireland: Connaught, Leinster, Munster, and Ulster. The map shows the counties and baronies within the provinces, archbishoprics, cities and towns, major roads, and other geographic features. The decorative cartouche in the lower right containing the distance scales shows men engaged in two forms of economic activity, fishing and agriculture. The cartouche is crowned by the British royal coat of arms, consisting of a shield supported by a lion and a unicorn and surrounded by a garter with the Anglo-Norman maxim honi soit qui mal y pense (shamed be he who thinks evil of it).

The Province of Ulster Surveyed by Sir William Petty

This map of Ulster (present-day Northern Ireland), published in London in 1689, is based on the Down Survey of Ireland undertaken in 1656–58. As indicated in the subtitle, the map shows the counties and baronies of the province, archbishoprics, cities, roads and bridges, and the distribution of seats in parliament. Relief is shown pictorially. The map has two distance scales, Irish miles and English miles. The Down Survey was the first detailed land survey on a national scale anywhere in the world. Its purpose was to measure lands which, following the calamitous English Civil War, much of which was fought on Irish soil, were to be taken from Irish Catholic landowners and given to English Protestants, many of whom were soldiers who had fought in the war under Oliver Cromwell (1599–1658). The survey was led by Sir William Petty (1623–87), a surgeon-general in the English army. The son of a poor weaver in Hampshire, Petty worked as a cabin boy, hawker, seaman, and clothier, before rising to become a physician, professor of anatomy at Oxford, professor of music in London, inventor, landowner, and Member of Parliament. He wrote several books, including A Treatise of Taxes and Contributions (1662), Political Survey or Anatomy of Ireland (1672), and Five Essays in Political Arithmetick (1687), in which, drawing in part on his work with the land survey, he arrived at profoundly original conclusions about labor, employment, wages, rents, the price of land, and money. For these insights he was called, by Karl Marx and others, the “father of political economy.” By gathering detailed statistics on prices, production, and other economic variables, Petty also pioneered the use of empiricism in economics. Because all of its results were “set down” in maps, Petty referred to the survey of Ireland as the Down Survey.

Bessarabia, the Ethnographical Map

In the spring of 1919 Captain John Kaba of the United States Army completed a two-month survey of political and economic conditions in Bessarabia (present-day Moldova) on behalf of the American Relief Administration, the organization established by the United States Congress to provide humanitarian assistance and combat mass starvation in Europe in the immediate aftermath of World War I. Kaba published his findings in a report entitled Politico-economic Review of Basarabia, issued on June 30, 1919. This map accompanied the report. It uses colored circles to show the size and ethnic composition of the populations of the towns and cities of the province. The colored bar graph to the left of the map provides a key to the circles, and gives the breakdown by ethnic group for all 3 million people in Bessarabia. The leading groups by size of population are listed as Roumanians (known as Moldavians in Russia), Jews, Ucranians [sic], Russians, “Roumaniens who have become Russians or Rutenians,” Germans (Colonists), Gypsies, Bulgarians (Colonists), Lipovenians (Old Believer Russians), Cossacks, Bulgarian-Turkish, Polish, Armenians, and various other nationalities. The table on the lower left of the map provides statistics on agricultural production; religious establishments; the populations of cities, towns, and counties; occupations of the inhabitants of the province; government budgets; the press; and schools, public health, and various other topics. The map shows internal boundaries between voloste and districts, monasteries, railway lines, stations, and bridges. The scale is in kilometers.

Economic Map of Georgia

This economic map of the Democratic Republic of Georgia in French was produced in 1918, the year in which Georgia declared its independence from the Russian Empire under a social democratic government. The map shows the borders of the new republic with Circassia (the Mountainous Republic of the Northern Caucasus) in the north, Turkey and the Republic of Armenia in the south, and Azerbaijan in the southeast. Also shown are towns and villages, ports, railroads, and the ferries linking the Black Sea port of Batoum (present-day Batumi) to Odessa (present-day Ukraine) and Novorossiysk (present-day Russian Federation). Colors and shading are used to show the different agricultural regions in the country, which include pasturage, forested regions, regions of viniculture and orchards, areas of grain production, and areas of specialized cultivation. The latter (listed in the table at the lower left and identified by region) include a great variety of crops, for example, tobacco, tea, mulberries (for silk production), nuts, decorative plants, and several others. Symbols indicate mines and quarries producing minerals of different types, including copper, lead, zinc, antimony, iron, gold, coal, naphtha, and other products. Relief is shown by spot elevations in meters. Two distance scales are provided, versts and kilometers. In 1921 the Red Army invaded Georgia, and it became a Soviet socialist republic, once again under Russian domination. Georgia became an independent state in 1991, following the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Lake Titicaca

This map of Lake Titicaca was made by Rafael E. Baluarte, cartographer of the Geographical Society of Lima, for a presentation to the society in December 1891 of a monographic study of the lake by Dr. Ignacio La Puente. It is based on surveys and explorations of the lake and its environs by the British diplomat and explorer Joseph Barclay Pentland (1797–1873), the Italian-Peruvian geographer and naturalist Antonio Raimondi (1826–90), the Swiss-born naturalist Louis Agassiz (1807–73), and others. The map shows ancient ruins, mines, the sites of noteworthy battles, roads, and railroads. Depths in the lake are indicated in meters. Relief is shown by hachures. The prime meridian is Paris, where the map was engraved. Located partly in Peru and partly in Bolivia, Titicaca is the largest freshwater lake in South America. At 3,810 meters above sea level, it is the highest of the world's large lakes. It covers 8,300 square kilometers, and extends in a northwest-to-southeast direction for a distance of 190 kilometers. At its widest point the lake is 80 kilometers across. The lake averages between 140 and 180 meters in depth, and reaches its greatest recorded depth of 280 meters off Isla Soto in its northeastern corner. (This map shows a depth of 256.49 meters at a location just east of the island.) More than 25 rivers flow into Lake Titicaca. Archeological ruins and other evidence indicate that different peoples have lived around the lake continuously since as early as 10,000 BC. These peoples have included the Pukara, Tiwanaku, Colla Lupaka, and Inca.