Lets be honest…we in the archives use Google Maps and Google earth all the time! It is such a quick and easy way to find areas of interest while conducting research or looking at old properties our patrons are looking up information on. Recently we visited Hunter Elementary School in the Franklin School District. We normally like to take our old township maps, like the ones we shared last month, the area where this school is had not changed much over the course of time (1856-1940). While these maps are historically accurate and we could tell a lot of information about the land, it just was not enough visual information for these young minds.
Insert what the Records Center and Archives would consider the precursor to Google Earth, the aerial photograph! These images certainly are not as interactive, but they can still tell us a lot of information! The aerial photographs that we have in the Records Center and Archives are of the entirety of Warren County in the years 1954 and 1962. It just so happens that the area where the school is located changed most drastically between the times that these images were captured.
We love utilizing these images to help students and patrons help tell the history of their homes, properties, schools, and businesses. Some of the different ways you can utilize these records to tell Warren County history are changes in: transportation, population, natural landscape, recreation, etc.
For the Hunter Elementary maps we were able to see drastic changes in population growth because in the 1954 image the area around the school and the school was made up of farms, on the 1962 image the school was built and the area surrounding the school is now neighborhoods. Another big change in this area was the construction of Interstate 75! Can you look at these images and find any other major changes?