Captain James Cook, Navigator


Captain Cook

Captain James Cook
The explorer, Captain Cook, is best known for his voyages in the Southern Pacific Ocean. However, he learned the profession of cartography (map-making) during a voyage to Newfoundland and Canada during the Seven-years war in the middle of the eighteenth century.

He surveyed the lower part of the Saint Lawrence river which led to the siege and capture of Quebec.

In those days, accurate maps and charts were considered highly secret as a weapon of war. Today, Admiralty charts cover the whole world.

Principles of cartography

Surveying triangle
This diagram illustrates the principles of cartography. This gives you the location of place C on your chart or map.

You go to place C and start all over again. With accurate instruments and extreme care, this method can produce results which are still accurate by modern standards.


The reason for telling you all this is that cartographers needed Tables. Remember Log Tables from your youth? In the eighteenth century, tables were produced by computers.

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