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WW1 Maps

Article about: I have aquired a few items from the family of a vets estate. The soldier was said to be a forward observer or scout. There were 8 to 10 maps in his personal items said to have been used by h

  1. #1

    Default WW1 Maps

    I have aquired a few items from the family of a vets estate. The soldier was said to be a forward observer or scout. There were 8 to 10 maps in his personal items said to have been used by him during the war. These maps are marked Verdun. I can not find any info on them. Are these common? Are there any value to these? Once framed they would add to anyones collection. Thanks

  2. #2

    Default Re: WW1 Maps

    Maps can be very sought after, depending on their condition and what they depict and when. You don't mention these showing the trenches or a date. Verdun, of course, was a major battle, but if these maps show Verdun in 1912 they will not generate nearly as much interest as they would if they were from the height of the battle there in 1916. Nationality of the maps is also important. Generally speaking, there were a LOT of maps made during the war. Every unit, from Army level right down to the Company level, needed current maps of their operating areas. That's thousands of maps. And then, just to ensure the numbers of maps would be truly mindnumbing, Each side regularly produced updated maps as a battle progressed in order to keep their soldiers up to date on the shifting front lines. If you look on eBay, you will almost always find a half dozen or so trench maps available, usually for about $75 to $125. Particularly timely maps may cost more, and maps predating the war and typically used in rear areas will cost much less. Verdun, in view of the importance of the batle there, could go for well above the average price, depending on their date, nationality, and what is depicted. Trench maps are in much higher demand, and command higher prices, than do the pre war maps that were often used in the early stages of the war, at a time when the war was much more mobile.

    From the little I can see, the map you have provided a copy of looks to be a pre-war French map of the area around Verdun. There is much less demand for these types of maps. Sometimes when you see these listed on eBay, they will try to pass them off as "aviators' maps". That is nonsense; they are just maps as would have been used by anyone who needed a map of the area before the war. On the up side, these are much more rare than the wartime trench maps because they weren't producing 10,000 of these a month, month after month! A Verdun map might have some special interest for a military collector just because of its location and the ability to compare pre-war with wartime conditions. Your more likely market, however, would probably be map collectors generally. Of course, your other maps may be much different and may be actual trench maps or other wartime maps. The value of each will depend on the circumstances I mentioned above. Good luck.
    Last edited by wingandprop; 03-31-2011 at 03:40 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: WW1 Maps

    Thanks for all the information above. I would have responded sooner but have been out of town. The maps do date from 1911 (the earliest) thru 1918. The maps are of Verdun and specifically Argonne Forest. I will have to do further research and your info is greatly appreciated. Thanks

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