Map Monday: Hand-Drawn Map of North America, Minnesota Regional Edition

Over the last few years, a cartographer named Anton Thomas has been meticulously hand-drawing a huge map of North America, all the way from Nunavut to Panama. Of course it includes the Upper Midwest.

The map is quite beautiful, massive, and full of whimsy. Here’s how Thomas describes the process:

An ongoing pictorial map, The North American Continent is drawn completely by hand with coloured pencil and pen. It is a 59 x 47 inch (150 x 120 cm) cylindrical projection of the entire region, spanning from Alaska to Panama; Greenland to the Caribbean. As of January 2017 it stands around 80% complete and has thousands of features, including 360 animals and 530 cities and towns.

Check out this great detailed look at the Minnesota/Wisconsin region, and feel free to go to the site and click around to explore the rest of the continent. is a non-profit and is volunteer run. We rely on your support to keep the servers running. If you value what you read, please consider becoming a member.


4 Responses to Map Monday: Hand-Drawn Map of North America, Minnesota Regional Edition

  1. John Maddening April 24, 2017 at 10:03 am #

    Guess he did MSP a few years back, when the Metrodome was still standing.

    • Bill Lindeke
      Bill Lindeke April 24, 2017 at 10:30 am #

      Looks like it! I didn’t notice that.

  2. Andrew A. April 24, 2017 at 12:13 pm #

    It interesting though, if you look at the large map Fargo is shown as the same pictographic size as Grand Forks. I would be interested to understand some of the reasoning behind the scale of each micro picture. Why are some cities included, while others are not? Why is the Coulee (karst) region shown with small hills that are less tall than those of northern Wisconsin in the Chequamegon region? Lots of cultural geography references in this map.

    • Bill Lindeke
      Bill Lindeke April 25, 2017 at 9:30 am #

      I would guess it’s all subjective and arbitrary, as is the case with hand-drawn anything. IMO that’s what makes it kinda fun.

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