Seeing Liverpool through Herman Melville’s Eyes: Google Earth Map of Victorian Liverpool

Salthouse Docks, by Atkinson Grimshaw

Salthouse Docks, by Atkinson Grimshaw

Most people have experienced entering a foreign city for the first time– it’s those first moments when your senses are most perceptive. Struck by the new sights and smells, the architecture and the customs, the strange and extraordinary aspects of the city emerge.

The project ‘Mapping Melville’s Liverpool’ offers just this experience, whether you’re a native Liverpudlian or have never visited the city, by showing Liverpool through the eyes of the American author, Herman Melville, culled from his visits to the city in 1839 and 1856.

Even though I’ve lived on three continents and in several big cities, helping make the map was an exciting experience. Buildings or places I have walked by almost without noticing, like the Lyceum on Bold Street, suddenly took on new meaning, and unusual discoveries, such as the Institute for the Restoration of Drowned Persons, which was once located on Chapel Street, completely altered my view of the now-business district of the city (if you’re a fan of Our Mutual Friend you’ll find the rather gruesome description of pulling bodies out of the Mersey in exchange for a few bob similar to Dickens’ description of London).

Uncover the gems and curiosities Melville found in Victorian Liverpool and experience the raw excitement of discovering a ‘new’ city.

Places of interest include: St George’s Hall, St John’s Market, the docks, Paradise and Lord Street and sailor-friendly hotels and pubs in Victorian Liverpool

This entry was posted in 2013, Books, Events, Maritime Lectures, Moby Dick on the Mersey, Victorian and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Seeing Liverpool through Herman Melville’s Eyes: Google Earth Map of Victorian Liverpool

  1. Ira Bickoff says:

    I am a high school teacher in New York’s Hudson Valley and have been working on a project to promote nonfiction maritime literature and ocean literacy using Google Earth. The site is:

    It involves chapter tours and activities. I have found it engages learners in my marine science class. Hopefully it will be useful to your readership.



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