About us and our crazy project

The Statistical Atlas

The life & death of the Statistical Atlas

The first Statistical Atlas was published in 1874 under the supervision of Francis Walker. Just two years shy of the centennial, it was meant as a celebration of America's growth over the past century.

The next two issues, for 1880 and 1890, were undertaken by Henry Gannett, the father of American mapmaking. Two things about that: Gannett was once electrocuted by an entire mountain, and I like his charts better than Walker's.

After that, it all went downhill, even according to the Census Bureau, eventually stopping publication in 1920.


The Statistical Atlas rising from the ashes like a modern-day perfect-bound phoenix

But oh hey, it's back! The Census Atlas of the United States, published from the results of the 2000 Census, is not only available as a super-expensive book but also as a PDF.

It is unbelievable and beautiful and enthralling and I highly recommend you download a copy.


But wait, the old ones are still totally relevant!

These Gilded Age atlases look super cool, but they also have information for every topic that is meaningful to you in your heart of hearts.

Election fatigue! You can check out the Election of 1824 (ended in the Corrupt Bargain), which paved the way for our current political spoils system.

Dating! You can see the westward flow of men, which continues to this day.

Oregon Trail! Find out what months everyone died from consumption. Ford the river!

Brains & Co.

The Brooklyn Brainery hosts collaborative classes in Brooklyn on everything from dinosaurs and knitting to cryptography and Thai food.

Sound neat? Check out our current selection.

We also make neat little sites like this one. Or maybe you're more into tweeting book quotes?


Me Myself

I'm Jonathan Soma, one of the founders of Brooklyn Brainery. I live in Brooklyn and tweet weird Chinatown finds as @dangerscarf.

I've also done data visualizations on everything from finding dates and subway travel to what everyone in Japan is up to at this very second.

How we did it

You're going to have to wait for this one, sorry!