Interlinked Visualizations

The Trading Consequences Interlinked Visualizations provide a general overview of how commodities were discussed between 1750 and 1950 along geographic and temporal dimensions. They provide an overview of commodity and location mentions extracted from 179000 historic documents (extracted from the digital archive listed below).

Please note that the visualizations will only work with newer versions of the Chrome Browser.

The visualizations show selected commodities or geographic locations in the context of time, location and other, potentially related commodities; interacting with one visualization adjusts the other visual views accordingly. In this way, we aim at supporting the exploration of this large collection of historic data on a meta-level; highlighting relations within the data from different perspectives. The visualizations can also be used to find documents via visual querying; direct access to the original documents is provided at all times (see document list to the right).

The Interlinked Visualizations

When loaded, the interlinked visualizations provide an overview of the entire document corpus. The map shows all locations mentioned across all documents. A timeline below the map shows the distribution of these documents across decades, starting 1750 and ending 1960. The collection chart below the timeline shows the distribution of the documents across the six different collections that provide the data source of the visualizations (see list below).


A vertical tag cloud in lists the top 50 most frequent commodities that were mentioned across all documents.

The document list to the very right shows the top 100 most relevant documents, ordered by the number of commodity mentions they contain. Selecting a document opens up the original source in its digital archives. Clicking on the square next to the document title brings up example sentences from this document with the commodity and location mentions.

Exploring the Interlinked Visualizations

To explore a commodity of interest, enter a commodity into the query field, or select a commodity from the vertical tag cloud.


Zoom into the map to explore how certain location relate to the selected commodity:


Select a particular time range of interest.


Hovering over the commodity chart shows the distribution of documents across collections. Note how the commodity chart adjusts corresponding to interactions with the timeline, tag cloud, and map.


The document list to the right is updated according to all interactions with the visualizations. The blue square next to each document indicates how many document mentions the document contains and to which collection the document belongs to. Clicking on the document title opens the original document in its digital archive. Clicking on the document square reveals the sentences within this document that mention the selected commodity. Clicking on a sentence brings people directly to the corresponding document page in the digital archive.



Data Sources

  • Foreign and Commonwealth Office Collection (JSTOR)
  • Directors’ Correspondence Archive (Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Archives)
  • Confidential Prints (AMD)
  • House of Commons Parliamentary Papers (ProQuest)
  • Early Canadiana Online, including: Women’s History; English Canadian Literature; History of French Canada; Native Studies; Hudson’s Bay Company; Early Governors General of Canada; Early Official Publications; Jesuit Relations; Early Canadian Periodicals; Health and Medicine.
  • A small number of documents from a variety of sources.

For more information on these sources view our corpus page and our project partners and funders page.


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