Ammassalik wooden maps
Ammassalik wooden maps are carved, tactile maps of the Greenlandic coastlines. In the 1880s, Gustav Holm led an expedition to the Ammassalik coast of eastern Greenland, where he met several Inuit communities who had had no prior direct contact with Europeans. He returned to Denmark with a set of three-dimensional wooden maps of the coast around Coordinates: , carved by a native of Umivik named Kunit.
Kunit approached Holm on February 8, 1885 and sold the maps representing the coast from Sermiligak to Kangerdlugsuatsiak. Kunit returned on March 21 with another piece representing the peninsula between Sermiligak and Kangerdluarsikajik.
Upon Holm's return, the maps were deposited along with the rest of the collection at the National Museum of Denmark in Copenhagen. As of 1948 the maps were still in Copenhagen; copies were deposited in the Musée d'Ethnographie du Trocadéro in Paris. At some point the maps were transferred to the Greenland National Museum in Nuuk, which was established in the mid-1960s. Woodward & Lewis (1998) write that the "only other known example" of such a map is a specimen at the Michigan State University museum — item 896.7, 62154 — which is probably a copy of Kunit's work.
In 2000, Post Greenland issued a stamp designed by Anne-Birthe Hove featuring the coastal map, as part of its "Greenland’s Cultural Heritage" series. The Greenland National Museum loaned out the maps for a 2007-8 exhibition at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago entitled Maps: Finding Our Place in the World, which also traveled to the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore.
|Description given by Kunit to Holm||Sølver||Elkins||Notes|
|1||Sardlermiut, on the west side of which is the site of an old settlement|
|2||Nepinerkit (from napavok), having the shape of a pyramid|
|3||Ananak, having the site of an old settlement on the southwest point||Others give the name Ananak to the cape on the mainland directly opposite, calling the island Kajartalik.|
|4||Aputitek||Sølver's label is closer to the bottom part of the third island than it is to the fourth island.|
|A||Itivdlek, where there are remains of a house||Sølver identifies this feature with Cape Wandel.|
|B||Sierak, a small fjord, in which salmon are found||Sølver identifies this feature with the fjord Nigertusok, or possibly with the point of land at its elbow.|
|C||Sarkarmiut, where there are remains of a house||Sølver identifies this feature with Cape Japetus Steenstrup.|
|D||Kangerdlugsuatsiak, a fjord of such length that a kayak can not even in a whole day row from the mouth to the head of the fjord and back again||Sølver places this feature on the fjord marked Sarkarmiut in the map. Elkins places it farther inland.|
|E||Erserisek, a little fjord||Sølver and Elkins almost agree on this feature; Elkins places the label farther inland, while Sølver includes part of the Odesund.|
|F||Nutugkat, a little fjord with a creek at the bottom|
|G||Merkeriak, kayak portage from Nutugkat to Erserisek along the bank of the creek, when the heavy ice blocks the headland between the two fjords|
|H||Ikerasakitek, a bay in which the land ice goes straight out to the sea|
|I||Kangerajikajik, a cape|
|J||Kavdlunak, a bay into which runs a creek|
|K||Apusinek, a long stretch where the land ice passes out into the sea.|
|M||Iliartalik, a fjord with a smaller creek|
|Q||Sangmilek, a little fjord with a creek|
|T||Kangerdluarsikajik, a smaller fjord|
- Holm 1886, p. 104.
- Bagrow 1948, p. 92.
- Woodward & Lewis 1998, p. 168.
- http://www.danstopicals.com/woodmap.htm http://www.stamps.gl/uk/info/kunstnere/Anne_Birthe_Hove/annebirthehove.htm
- "Maps: Finding Our Place in the World: All About Maps". fieldmuseum.org. Retrieved 2009-11-15.
- Mallery 1893, p. 346.
- Sølver 1954, p. 189.
- Elkins 1999, p. 227.
- "paa hvis Vestside der findes en gammel Boplads" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "(af napavok). der har Form som en Pyramide" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "der har en gammel Boplads paa SV.-Pynten" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- Sølver 1954, p. 188.
- "I have not been able to identify two of the islands that are named in the original source." (Elkins 1999, p. 225)
- "hvor der er Rester af et Hus" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en mindre Fjord, hvori der findes Lax" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "hvor der er Rester af et Hus" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en Fjord, hvis Længde er saa stor, at en Kajak netop paa en Dag kan ro fra Mundingen ind til Fjordens Inderste og tilbage igjen" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en lille Fjord" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en lille Fjord med Bræ i Bunden" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "Overbærersted for Kajak fra Nutugkat til Erserisek langs med Randen af Bræen, naar Storisen spærrer ved Næsset mellem de to Fjorde" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en Bugt, i hvilken Landisen gaar lige ud til Havet" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "et Forbjerg" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en Bugt, hvor ud i der kommer en Bræ" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en lang Strækning, hvor Landisen gaar ud til Havet" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en Fjord med en mindre Bræ" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en lille Fjord med Bræ" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- "en mindre Fjord" (Holm 1888, Table 41)
- Hansen-Blangsted, Emile (19 February 1886), "Minutes", Compte Rendu (in French) (Société de Géographie) (5): 162–163
- Hansen-Blangsted expresses doubt that the maps could have been carved by the natives. He mentions a talk he gave on 14 December 1885.
- Holm, Gustav (1886), "Eskimoiske 'Kaart' af Træ (Eskimo Wooden 'Charts')", Geografisk Tidsskrift (in Danish) 8: 103–105
- Holm quotes and rebuts Hansen-Blangsted (1886).
- Holm, Gustav; Garde, Vilhelm (1887), Den Danske Konebaads-Expedition til Grønlands Østkyst (The Danish Umiaq-Expedition to Greenland's east coast) (in Danish), Copenhagen: Thieles Bogtrykkeri, retrieved 9 November 2009
- Holm and Garde promise more scientific details in the forthcoming Holm (1888).
- Holm, Gustav (1888), "Den østgrønlandske Expedition, udført i Aarene 1883–85, Anden Del (The East Greenland Expedition, conducted in the years 1883–85, Second Part)", Meddelelser om Grønland (in Danish) (Copenhagen: Blanco Lunos Kgl. Hof-Bogtrykkeri (F. Dreyer)) 10: 43–182
- Written in 1887, published in 1888. According to Elkins (1999, p. 225), this is the first publication of the maps.
- Mallery, Garrick (1893), "Picture-Writing of the American Indians", in Powell, J. W., Tenth Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, 1888–89, Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office
- Thalbitzer, William (1914), Thalbitzer, William, ed., "The Ammassalik Eskimo. Contributions to the Ethnology of the East Greenland Natives", Meddelelser om Grønland 39: 319–753
- Pages 1–147 in the same volume are an English translation of Holm (1888).
- Bagrow, Leo (1948), "Eskimo Maps", Imago Mundi 5 (1): 92 + two unpaged plates, doi:10.1080/03085694808591919
- Sølver, Carl V. (May 1954), "Eskimoisk kartografi", Grønland (in Danish) (Copenhagen: Det grønlandske Selskab) (5): 187–192
- Sølver, Carl V. (Autumn 1957), "Eskimo Maps From Greenland", Archaeology 10: 188–190
- This is an English translation of Sølver (1954) by a Mr. Christian Kampen of Copenhagen. Some parts are condensed or omitted. The article notes state that "Captain Sølver's article originally appeared in the Danish periodical Vikingen, in November 1954." Although it is possible that Sølver also published in the Norwegian satirical magazine Vikingen, this note is probably an error. Sølver's May 1954 article in Grønland is cited by other authors.
- MacEachren, Alan M. (1986), "A linear view of the world: Strip maps as a unique form of cartographic representation", The American Cartographer 13 (1): 7–25, doi:10.1559/152304086783900185
- MacEachren's citation and image source is Bagrow (1948).
- Woodward, David; Lewis, G. Malcolm, eds. (1998), Cartography in the Traditional African, American, Arctic, Australian, and Pacific Societies, The History of Cartography 2.3, University of Chicago Press, pp. 167–169, 176, ISBN 0-226-90728-7
- Elkins, James (May 1999), The domain of images, Cornell University Press, pp. 225–228, ISBN 0-8014-3559-5
- Buxton, Bill (2007), Sketching User Experiences: Getting the Design Right and the Right Design, Morgan Kaufmann, ISBN 0-12-374037-1
- Leithäuser, Joachim G. (1958), Mappae Mundi, Die geistige Eroberung der Welt, Berlin: Safari-Verlag, p. 20
- Harvey, P. D. A. (1980), The history of topographical maps : symbols, pictures and surveys, London: Thames & Hudson, ISBN 0-500-24105-8
- Christian Berthelsen, Inger Holbech Mortensen, Ebbe Mortensen, W. Glyn Jones, ed. (1990), Kalaallit Nunaat Greenland Atlas, Copenhagen: Pilersuiffik, p. 1