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TITLE
Effects of the Caledonian Canal on Glenurquhart
EXTERNAL ID
PC_GLENURQUHART_JANBELL_MAPS_003_002
PLACENAME
Glenurquhart
DISTRICT
Inverness
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Urquhart and Glenmoriston
DATE OF IMAGE
1801
PERIOD
1810s
SOURCE
Glenurquhart Heritage Group
ASSET ID
22723
KEYWORDS
farm
farms
agrarian
zoomable images

In 1801 land was being utilised in a more complex way than it previously had been. The Enlightenment had a large impact on 19th Century Scotland and many of the scientific innovations had an effect upon cartography. For example 'sandy light soil' is mentioned. By this time it was probably known, if the reasons were not, that sedimentary rock was often infertile. This was especially the case if it was made of inorganic rock or if it contained calcium which had not been broken down by the earth. In later maps, geological properties of the land would be colour coded. Whilst this is not a feature of maps from the early 19th Century, it can be demonstrated that the discovery of the impact that the soil had on the economical properties of land were already having an effect.

Whilst the description of geological properties was a recent innovation, the significance of plant life was also increasingly used on maps. The moors that surrounded the grassy valley were of little agricultural use but the map places a large emphasis on improving this land.

Land improvement would be made possible by two main innovations. Agricultural implements in the 19th Century were made significantly lighter. Secondly, crop rotation was introduced. Glenurquhart was lucky to have 'good' Sir James Grant as its Laird during the early 19th Century, because he was very enthusiastic about modern advances in farming. It was at this time that it was discovered that land was enriched by crop rotation. This process involves planting crops which create bacteria that break down nutrients in the soil. Subsequently the soil becomes more fertile for different plants.

All of these innovations created an 'Agricultural Revolution' which had an impact on cartography. In previous maps the soil type was of little interest, and the potential for developing land would not have been noted.

One other interesting feature is that this map has a compass point aiming north. This became a feature of all maps during the 19th Century.

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Effects of the Caledonian Canal on Glenurquhart

INVERNESS: Urquhart and Glenmoriston

1810s

farm; farms; agrarian;; zoomable images

Glenurquhart Heritage Group

Glenurquhart Heritage Group (maps)

In 1801 land was being utilised in a more complex way than it previously had been. The Enlightenment had a large impact on 19th Century Scotland and many of the scientific innovations had an effect upon cartography. For example 'sandy light soil' is mentioned. By this time it was probably known, if the reasons were not, that sedimentary rock was often infertile. This was especially the case if it was made of inorganic rock or if it contained calcium which had not been broken down by the earth. In later maps, geological properties of the land would be colour coded. Whilst this is not a feature of maps from the early 19th Century, it can be demonstrated that the discovery of the impact that the soil had on the economical properties of land were already having an effect. <br /> <br /> Whilst the description of geological properties was a recent innovation, the significance of plant life was also increasingly used on maps. The moors that surrounded the grassy valley were of little agricultural use but the map places a large emphasis on improving this land.<br /> <br /> Land improvement would be made possible by two main innovations. Agricultural implements in the 19th Century were made significantly lighter. Secondly, crop rotation was introduced. Glenurquhart was lucky to have 'good' Sir James Grant as its Laird during the early 19th Century, because he was very enthusiastic about modern advances in farming. It was at this time that it was discovered that land was enriched by crop rotation. This process involves planting crops which create bacteria that break down nutrients in the soil. Subsequently the soil becomes more fertile for different plants.<br /> <br /> All of these innovations created an 'Agricultural Revolution' which had an impact on cartography. In previous maps the soil type was of little interest, and the potential for developing land would not have been noted.<br /> <br /> One other interesting feature is that this map has a compass point aiming north. This became a feature of all maps during the 19th Century.