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Number: 3668
Continent: Africa
Region: West
Place Names: Lome, Togo
Year of Origin: 1913
Title: Ubersichtskarte Der Stadt LOME Ubersichtskarte der Stadt Lome / Masstab 1:4000 / Angefertigt im Juli und August 1913 durch das Kaiserl. Vermessungsamt fur das Schutzgebiet Togo.
Language: German
Publish Origin: Berlin
Height: 54.1
Width: 85.6
Units: centimeters
Size Class.: Medium
Scale: 1 : 4,000
Color Type: Outline Color
Click for high-resolution zoomable image
Cartographer: Engert, [landmesser/land surveyor]
Engraver: Dietrich Reimer
Ernst Vohsen
Dietrich Reimer
Ernst Vohsen
Other Contributors: Deutsche Togo Gesellschaft
Bodecker und Meyer
Luther und Seyfert
Kaiserliche Vermessungsamt Schulzgbiet Togo
Deutsch Westafrikanische Handelsgesellschaft
Northernmost Latitude: 6.13
Southernmost Latitude: 6.11
Westernmost Longitude: 1.21
Easternmost Longitude: 1.23
Measurement Notes: modern estimates
Notes: [source Pahor/Johnson] Town Plan, PUBLISHER: IMPERIAL SURVEYING OFFICE FOR THE TOGO PROTECTED AREA / KOLONIAL-KARTOGRAPHISCHEN INSTITUT; LOM? TOGO: Ubersichtskarte der Stadt Lome / Maβtab 1:4000 / Angefertigt im Juli und August 1913 durch das Kaiserl. Vermessungsamt f? das Schutzgebiet Togo. Berlin: Dietrich Reimer (Ernst Vohsen), 1913. Lithograph in colour (Very Good, bright, clean and crisp, just some very light creasing along old folds), 61.5 x 92 cm (24 x 36 inches). Very rare ? the only large format printed map of Lom? Togo from the German colonial era; one of the most detailed and fascinating early urban plans of a major West African city; based upon surveys conducted in the summer of 1913 by the Imperial Surveying Office for Togo, published in Berlin under the supervision of the Kolonial-kartographischen Institut. This is the only printed large format map of Lom? Togo from the German colonial era (1885 - 1914), and is significant for being one of the most detailed and content rich early urban plans of any major West African city. It is predicated upon exacting surveys conducted in July and August 1913 by the Kaiserlich Vermessungsamt f? das Schutzgebiet Togo (The Imperial Surveying Office for the Togo Protected Area); it is signed by ?Engert?, a landmesser (land surveyor), of whom little is known. The manuscript upon which the present map is based was promptly dispatched to Berlin, where it was edited and published under the direction of Kolonial-kartographischen Institut, the special German colonial mapping office, running off the presses of the firm of Dietrich Reimer. The map captures Lom? located along the shores of the Gulf of Guinea, during the twilight of German rule over the colony of Togoland (modern Togo), when the fast growing city had a population of approaching 10,000 (the 1911 census counted around 8,000 residents). The map provides a large-scale perspective of the entire city, detailing every street and cadastral lot, plus outlining and labelling every major building. Overall Lom?has the appearance of a model German city (except one that lies near the Equator!), as the pattern of the streets and the placement of edifices and parks closely follows 19th Century German urban schemes. The centre of the city features orderly streets and spacious squares and markets, all with German names, while labelling the premises of mercantile firms (trading in cacao, ivory, coffee, palm oil, etc.); ?schule? (schools); the police station; the post office, as well as various Christian missions and churches (including the large ?Katholische Mission?, completed in 1902; and the ?Evgl. Kirche?, or the Protestant Church, completed in 1907). Running along the western side of the city centre are the lines of various railways, completed between 1905 and 1911, linking the ?Bahnhof? (station), in the upper right, with the ?Zoll? (customs office), which sits at the foot of the ?Landungsbr?ke? a great commercial pier (completed in 1904). To the west of the city centre is are the emerging suburbs of lower density development, composed of wide boulevards, interspersed with palm groves. Amidst this verdant scene are many institutions, such as hospitals, jails and the civil service headquarters, plus the proposed great green space, the ?Projektierer Stadt-Park?. To the far left, at the end of the grand thoroughfare of the Wilhelmstrasse (which features a modern tramway), is the Governor?s Palace, the splendid residence of the head of the German colonial regime in Togo, which was completed in 1907. The map is the only detailed and complete graphic record of Lom? one of West Africa?s most dynamic cities, captured during a critical historical juncture. It is of great value for researchers seeking to understand the process of urbanization and industrialization in Sub-Saharan Africa during the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. A Note on Rarity The present map is very rare. It would have been made in only a small print run for use by colonial officials and businessmen with interests in Togoland, and given its separate issue and large size, examples would have been subject to wear leading to it very low survival rate. We can trace only 5 institutional examples, held by libraries in Germany, Netherlands and Austria. Moreover, we cannot trace any sales records going back 25 years. Lom? Togo?s Vibrant Window to the World The region that came to include Lom?was traditionally the home of the Ewe people, a culturally sophisticated and affluent society. From the 15th to the mid-19th Centuries, Europeans refrained from attempting to formally colonize Togo, yet conducted numerous slave raids along the coast, with great consequences to the local people. In 1874, a motley group of African, German and English traders founded Lom?as small commercial port for exporting Togo?s bounty of coffee, palm products and cacao. During the ?Scramble for Africa?, German interests came to take precedence in what was then called ?Togoland?. Importantly, Germans were not newcomers to West Africa; the Electorate of Brandenburg (later known as Prussia) operate a colony along the nearby Gold Coast from 1682 to 1721, and since then German traders had been a major fixture in the region on their own account. In 1884, the adventurer Gustav Nachtigal compelled the chiefs around Lom?to cede the territory to Germany, so forming the German Protectorate of Togoland. Germany?s claim to Togoland was affirmed by the European Great Powers at the Berlin Conference of 1884-5. Lom?was made the capital of German Togoland, and benefitted from a major influx of both public and private investment. It was rapidly transformed from a muddy outpost into one of Africa?s most modern and best planned cities, as showcased by the present map. Major German mercantile concerns established their regional headquarters in Lom? while the railways made the city a locus of industry (such as the refinement and packaging of commodities). The city was also one of the continent?s main bases of Christian missionary activity and, by extension, a major educational centre. By the time that the present map was made, despite its relatively small size, Lom?was one of the most vibrant, affluent and culturally sophisticated places in West Africa. In 1914, during the early days of World War I, Togoland was seized by British forces; German hegemony was over for good. During the post-war settlement, the country was given to France, becoming French Togoland. Under Gallic rule, Lom?remained the capital and urban development continued in a orderly fashion, while the city experienced steady, but manageable population growth. However, upon Togo gaining its independence from France in 1960, the population of Lom?experienced explosive growth; that year the city proper had 85,000 residents, while today it has over 900,000 (while the population of the metropolitan area exceeds 1.7 million). This had resulted in disorderly urban planning, especial outside of the old core of the city portrayed upon the present map. References: Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin: XI. HA, E 51303; Bayerische Staatsbibliothek: Mapp. XX,75 ps; Universit?sbibliothek Leiden: K 10138 Togo; S?hsische Landesbibliothek ? Staats- und Universit?sbibliothek Dresden: (DE-14)Tab.geogr.B.Afr.4120; ?terreichischen Nationalbibliothek: K III 101059 KAR MAG; OCLC: 164843801
Last updated: Nov 20, 2020