by ehistoryadmin on October 1, 2016

Brian Hollinshead of Open Street Map Project visited the library yesterday to introduce us on a whirlwind introduction to the resources available. It is a marvelous project which offers immense possibilities for historians an indeed members of the public in general.

He demonstrated some of the features of the OpenStreetMap (OSM) while he delivered 27 out of copyright OS paper maps, mostly 1910 and 1937 editions,on behalf of OSM.

The crux of the idea is to deliver reliable useful information without ownership and copyright concerns on an open platform worldwide.

In terms of historical information, baronies, civil parishes, townlands are all mapped and work is ongoing but there are extremely useful modern maps as well showing cycle, lanes, bus routes etc. etc. It is hosted and updated by an extremely dedicated group of volunteers and anyone interested should make contact. Great project.

Links to some of the OpenStreetMap voluntary project pages.

world wide map, overlays for transport and cyclists. print an entire or part screen image. share a map link by email.

One advantage of this site in that you can enter the name of a townland or Civil Parish not just an address or town/village name, i.e. Liffeybank Dublin, Acaun Carlow, Kylemore Galway. Some may find it less easy on other sites.

overlays for Townlands, civil Parishes, Baronies, EDs etc. names in English or Irish.

details of over 60,000 townlands, including area, outline on zoomable map, list of neighbouring townlands, direct links to 1901 and 1911 census townland page ( and Griffiths Valuation pages which still a work in progress)

On this page if you search for Rathvilly it will offer you the Barony, Civil Parish, ED and Townland to chose from.

Detailed information re Ireland’s place in the overall project and some technical details.

Includes detailed videos showing procedure for adding townlands




Brian also reminded me of the marvelous resource at the UCD Digitial Library, which is worth exploring for so many other reasons also.

Ordnance Survey Ireland (OSi) 19th Century Historical Maps

A collection of mainly 19th century maps of almost 150 cities, towns, and villages in the Republic of Ireland. Most are Town Plans which were surveyed at either five or ten foot to one mile scale between 1837 and 1896. The remainder were produced by enlargement of the 1/2500 maps between 1892 and 1911.

This includes large scale (1871-1873) sheets for the following towns in County Kildare





Kildare town




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