Historical Decorative Map, The University of Wisconsin
Early 1950s Pictorial Map

This item is sold. It has been placed here in our online archives as a service for researchers and collectors.

University of Wisconsin pictorial map
University of Wisconsin pictorial map detail University of Wisconsin pictorial map detail
University of Wisconsin pictorial map detail University of Wisconsin pictorial map detail
University of Wisconsin pictorial map detail University of Wisconsin pictorial map detail
Carl Beck (1886-1965) (editor)
Historical Decorative Map, The University of Wisconsin,
Teaching - Research - Public Service As it was Mid-Century

Hagstrom Co., New York: 1951
19.5 x 30.5 inches, border
21.5 x 32.75 inches, overall
Sold, please inquire as to the availability of similar items.

A detailed and colorful pictorial bird's-eye view map of the University of Wisconsin, Madison campus. Published and copyrighted by the Wisconsin Alumni Association, the richly illustrated map celebrates the university's history and accomplishments through illustrations, captions and even snippets of school songs, including “On Wisconsin!” The map is printed in shades of green, blue, red, brown, tan, buff and black, and is surrounded by a border of W's that are in turn surrounded by a metallic gold border. The cartography includes streets and campus buildings. Five large inset illustrations and 22 smaller ones show campus landmarks and scenes of campus life. Along the bottom border, a line drawing of "The Proposed New Mall Begun 1950" under the caption "Looking to the Future Planning Ahead" is flanked by 12 portraits of past university presidents. The cartouche is decorated with a pair of torches, the university seal, and an illustration of a badger, the school mascot. A compass rose drawn in the same perspective as the map, with rhumb lines is in the upper left corner, and boats are shown in Lake Mendota. A male and a female student wearing typical early 1950s collegiate clothing and saddle shoes seemingly stride towards the viewer out of the center of the map, in an interesting visual effect.

The map was compiled and planned by Carl Beck, a University of Wisconsin alumnus who co-wrote the famous college marching band song, "On Wisconsin!" with W.T. Purdy during his student years. The song was later adopted as the official song of the State of Wisconsin. He went on to become a trust advisor for Chase Manhattan Bank and was a frequent contributor to the Wisconsin Alumni Magazine.

Hagstrom Company is credited in the cartouche with the design and execution of the map. This map publishing firm was established in 1916 by Andrew Hagstrom, a Swedish immigrant to New York City, and specialized in maps and atlases including decorative pictorial maps, road maps and transit system maps. Hagstrom provided the elevated train and subway map for New York City phonebooks during the 1940s and 1950s. The firm became part of Macmillan Publishing Company in 1968, and in 1981 was sold to the American Map Corp. Since 2010, Hagstrom has been a subsidiary of the Kappa Map Group, with offices in Queens, New York.


"100 Years of 'On Wisconsin!'" UW-Madison Libraries, Archives & Oral History. 2009. http://archives.library.wisc.edu/uw-archives/exhibits/onwisconsin/beckpurdy.html (13 December 2012).

Christiano, Gregory J. "The Hagstrom Map Company Publication Code." 13 October 2002. http://www.myrecollection.com/christianog/hagstromcode.html (13 December 2012).

"Company History." Kappa Map Group. 2011. https://www.kappamapgroup.com/t-companyhistory.aspx (13 December 2012).