Update:Subscribe to this feed to learn about Google Earth updates as they happen. Google skipped right past the third dimension and landed directly in the fourth (time) by offering historical maps on Google Earth.
Google skipped right past the third dimension and landed directly in the fourth (time) by offering historical maps on Google Earth. Now you can travel back in time -- for example, I am looking at the globe of 1790. Don't expect detailed high resolution photography from days gone by, but it's still interesting to see old maps overlaid on the satellite imagery of today.
Playing with layer transparency on the overlaid maps gives you a good sense of how things have changed over the years -- especially when looking at more detailed maps like New York 1836 or London 1843.
Currently, maps are available for:
World Globe 1790
North America 1733
United States 1833
Lewis and Clark 1814
New York 1836
San Francisco 1853
South America 1787
Buenos Aires 1892
Middle East 1861
England, Wales 1790
Australia Southeast 1844
Various other maps from Map Finder
Update: To use this new feature, expand the Featured Content -> Rumsey Historical Maps in the Layers panel.