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One Historical Map for Each and Every Year in Recorded History
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Books by John Carl Nelson, published by World History Maps, Inc.

Historical Atlas of the Great Khans: Mongol Conquests 1162-1294

I have started a new book project which I hope to have finished by the end of the year. This book will be "Historical Atlas of the Great Khans." This is something I have been interested in ever since reading Harold Lamb's biography of Genghis Khan back in high school. Usually when one sees maps of the Mongol Conquests they are shown in one or at most four maps with only the major offensives included. This will be an attempt to show all the conquests, including minor campaigns, in detail. I will be posting content and images to facebook as the work progresses and I welcome comments .


Historical Atlas of the Eight Billion: World Population History 3000 BCE to 2020

Explore the History of World Population Growth as never before with John Carl Nelson’s fascinating new book Historical Atlas of the Eight Billion. Based on the recent population estimates and GIS technology, Eight Billion shows how each of the regions and countries of the world compare to each other and over different periods of time. It tells the story of how our population got to where we are today.


Maps for each of 32 time periods show:

  • The size of the population in each region
  • The changes in each region from the previous period
  • The largest countries and largest cities of the world at that time

Text for each of the 32 time periods show:

  • A summary of the developments during the period
  • A list of the largest countries and largest cities
  • A table of the regions showing percentages

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Visually stunning and power-packed with information, Eight Billion is an invaluable reference in this critical time in World History.

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The goal of this book is to present a story of how the population of different regions of the world, largest countries of the world, and largest cities of the world compare to each other over different time periods and how they grow (or decline) from one period to the next. The story is told by a series of maps.


The book is divided into three parts. Part I describes the regions (see below). Part II tells the story of the rise of population to the one billion mark up to the year 1800. Part III continues the story from 1800 to 2020 and portrays the growth of population through the next seven billion. Time period intervals are gradually shortened moving forward in time.


For purposes of comparison the world is divided into 24 regions based on geography and common history. Current countries are used for statistical purposes only and are grouped into one or the other of the regions. Some of the large countries are split into separate regions or have large parts assigned to different regions. Information pertaining to the regions is included in Part I of the book.


A world map is shown for each time period with the west and east hemispheres on facing pages. Vegetation and relief are shown as the background and country borders shown are those as of the first day of the final year of the period.



Each map is accompanied by two sections of text. The first section describes the overall developments during the period, highlighting key points. Following that is a list of all countries with one percent or more of the world’s population and their percentage of the world’s total. This is followed by a list of all cities with one tenth percent or more of the world’s population. The lists of countries and cities are sorted by largest population first.


The second section is a table of regions. This table lists all twenty four regions sorted by largest population first. The table columns contain percentages of the total, percent change from the previous period, and percent change per decade from the previous period. The first map will not have the percentage changes and all maps from 1950 on will not have percent change per decade since these periods correspond to decades from that point.