HAT BOOK GROUP, May 10 "The map that changed the world"

The Next HAT book group meeting:

Date: Saturday, May 10
Location:  OISE, 252 Bloor Street West
TIME: 2:30-4pm
BOOK:  The map that changed the world: William Smith and the birth of modern geology
by Winchester, Simon.

3 holds / 19 copies (plus e-book and audio book in Library)

In 1793, William Smith, an engineer and canal digger, concluded that rocks were arranged in layers and that each layer contained different fossils unique to it. This was a monumental discovery, as it contradicted existing church beliefs, and it would become the foundation for the science of geology. Smith spent the next 20 years creating the world's first geological map.

Still a thing of beauty, this sizeable representation (8' 6') of the underside of England from Wales to the Thames remains a testament to Smith's persistence. Tragically, he did not realize any significant income from his map, and four years after its publication he was sent to debtor's prison. Upon his release, he remained virtually homeless and unemployed for ten years. Not until 1831 was he finally recognized for his great contribution when he was awarded the first Wollaston Medal and given a small lifetime pension by the King.