A project to digitise historic parish maps of Staffordshire is nearing its fundraising target.
The Friends of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Archives have been working on the idea for more than seven years.
The Tithe maps of the 1840s are often the earliest detailed maps of parishes, showing houses, roads, footpaths and fields. Accompanying records also include the names of the owner and occupier of each plot.Richard Totty, Chairman of the Friends of Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archives said: “These are incredibly important historical records for the county and are vital resources for anyone interested in parish, house and family history.
“Many of the maps are also very large and beautifully drawn and would be a delight for people interested in maps themselves.
“Preserving the original documents and making them more available to people online is what the project is all about and it’s thanks to our team of over 50 volunteers that the maps will soon be available.
“We are also very grateful for organisations who provided funding and sponsored individual maps. We have already raised £13,000 but still need to secure a further £5,000 to complete the project.”
Local history groups, parish councils, businesses and individuals have all contributed to make the project a reality.
Gill Heath, Cabinet member responsible for the Archives Service at Staffordshire County Council, said: “It’s excellent news that the Tithe maps and records will be available digitally soon and we are incredibly grateful to the volunteers who are making it possible.
“The maps will give us an even greater insight into life in Staffordshire at the time.”
For more details about the project and to find out how to donate click here.