Book of Maps: Mss. 226, Gilbert Collection. Lewis, Robert.
A Book of Maps of the several Denominations of Land in the several districts of Ireland, which the several successive Colles have for many years last past returned as not to be found; partly taken from the Maps of the Down Survey, those belonging to the Rt. Hnble. Sr. Thos. Taylor, Baronet, and the Books of Maps lying in the Quit Rent Office of His Ma’ties Custom House, Dublin. 77 coloured maps.
Robert Lewis’ Book of Maps dates from sometime between 1773 and 1782 and was probably an addendum to a private collection of detailed maps of land-holdings in Ireland. The original Parish Maps of the Down Survey, also known as the Civil Survey maps, had been destroyed in a fire in 1711 in the Surveyor General’s Office, but copies still existed. In a massive undertaking by Sir William Petty, these maps had been drawn up after the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland in 1652, and were essentially a record of the 2,500,000 acres of Irish land confiscated and re-distributed to supporters of Cromwell. This particular map book contains information on those who forfeited land and details on the profitability and type of land confiscated.
For a history of map-making in Ireland, consult the Dublin City Public Libraries catalogue.