Home Page and Genealogy of a Family of Geographers and Mapmakers


Family History



Ian Bartholomew


The Firm





Family Access

Username and Password required


John George Bartholomew: The Naming of Antarctica


The Collins Bartholomew Heritage Video


Exhibition Putting Scotland on the map:

The world of John Bartholomew & Son'

'Putting Scotland on the map: The world of John Bartholomew & Son' Exhibition


7 December 2012 to 7 May 2013




Bartholomew Archive

The Bartholomew Archive is the remarkable record of the firm, John Bartholomew & Son Ltd. Managed by the National Library of Scotland, it is one of the most extensive cartographic archives available for research in a public institution.



A long family association with the Royal Scottish Geographical Society

So often it is the intention of successive generations to record, for posterity, the history of their own times, and so often these good intentions have been thwarted by other commitments...[Peter H. Bartholomew, Forward to "Bartholomew 150 Years", 1976]

John George Bartholomew 1860-1920, Portrait by E.A.Walton RSA

John George Bartholomew 1860-1920

Portrait by E.A.Walton RSA.


This portrait was painted to commemorate him receiving an honorary doctorate from the University of Edinburgh in 1909 and shows him in his robe with set of compasses and a globe, symbolising his activities.

National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh

This website is dedicated to the Bartholomew mapmaking family and its story in text and pictures. 

The public part of this site provides links and resources for researchers who share an interest in the history of the family company, John Bartholomew & Son Ltd, the cartographic tradition and the people behind it. 

The content of this site borrows editorial material from many publicly available sources.  Where possible, these have been acknowledged.

Genealogical information is available thanks to many years of dedicated research by Robert Bartholomew (1927-2017)

The privacy of living individuals has been intentionally preserved.


By the late 18th century the city of Edinburgh was well established as the centre of Scotland’s flourishing publishing industry. Without doubt, one of the companies responsible for this enviable reputation was John Bartholomew & Son. From humble beginnings the Bartholomew firm became the world’s pre-eminent publisher of maps and atlases, carrying for many years the title of Geographers and Cartographers Royal.


Early advertising posters for Bartholomew's MapsIt was George Bartholomew (1784-1871), an engraver with Daniel Lizars of Edinburgh, and the first of six generations in the Bartholomew map-making dynasty, who initially set the Bartholomew family on the road to cartographic fame. However, it was his son John Bartholomew Senior (1805-1861) who really established the reputation of the Bartholomew firm.


Setting up in business as a map engraver in 1826, he soon gained recognition as a skilled cartographer and businessman. Under the subsequent guidance of John Junior (1831–1893), John George (1860–1920), John (Ian) (1890–1962), and John C (1923-2008), the business continued to prosper by introducing new production techniques and by pushing cartographic design to new levels of excellence. In 1980 the business was sold to Reader’s Digest and then in 1985 to News International.    [Mick Ashworth - Harper Collins]



Meet The Bartholomews Exhibition: Photo Tour




Bartholomew 150 Years, 1976

Although out of print, this 112 page hardback book is richly illustrated and traces the story of the Bartholomew mapmaking company from 1826. It includes many biographical references to family members.  A few copies can still sometimes be found on


To check for availability, click here:

Contributions of textual material and illustrations for this website may be submitted for consideration.  Please contact: webmaster


Note: The website for John E. A. Bartholomew Consulting has been relocated. Click here for new homepage.


Family Access

. Username and Password required.

Forgotten password? Contact webmaster


© 2023 All Rights Reserved John E A Bartholomew