Ferries and landing sites on topographic maps


  • Peter Michaelsen Former employee at The Danish Agency for Data Supply and Efficiency




Denmark is a country with fiords, sounds, bays and more than 200 islands, many of which have been inhabited. This has resulted in transport by boats from prehistoric time. This article presents instructions and specifications used by topographers 1877-1998 for mapping in 1:20 000 and 1:25 000. In Topographiske Kaartsignaturer (Topograpic Map Symbols) from 1831 are three different types of symbols for ferries and a symbol for landing place. In Ledetraad i Detailmaaling (Guide to Mapping) from 1877 are descriptions of topographic elements that must be noted at the measuring and revisions of the maps. The instructions did not change for the topic’s ferries and landing places in the period 1877-1967. From 1968, less information was about ferries and landing places had to be noted during fieldwork. Landing places disappears form the instructions in 1977. As examples are shown sections of maps depicting the ferries at Udbyhøj and Jegindø-Mors and of landings places from maps covering Vigsø and Lild Strand.
The information the topographers brought home was related to the ferry’s ownership and duty to transportation. There was no distinction between passenger ferries, car ferries, train ferries and route boats. If information about this is needed, the map book Danmark 1:200 000 issued from 1931 gives the best ferry information available on maps. The book is revised 15 times 1931-1958. From 1961, a new issue has appeared nearly every year. This article shows sections of map pages from different years.
The conclusion is that the maps in 1:20 000 and 1:25 0000 shows ferries, but not ferry routes. With a revision cycles of 10-30 years it is impossible to see when a ferry was established or discontinued. This is, however, shown in the map books in 1:200 000, often with revisions and information about different ferry types.