Country Directory

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

#FortressEarth Update No. 1

I've been fairly busy since my introductory article back in February on the #FortressEarth Mapping Project.

Expansive projects like this one can only really work and be completed when people share their knowledge. I received an email from a photographer with a file containing around 140 star forts that I hadn't mapped as part of Version 1 of "Star Forts Around the World". That led me to complied Version 2 which contains 161 additional star forts. You can check that out here.

Trying to map every castle and fort is a very daunting task and it takes a lot of work. Thankfully, since it's literally impossible for me to view every square kilometer of the globe in search of sites, there are lots of resources out there. While taking advantage of one such resource, Wikimapia, (to which I am a contributor) I was able to review Burma, Pakistan, and the US - countries I had "completed". I was able to add another 70 forts to those files. I've also been able to complete mapping the countries of Afghanistan, Suriname, Syria, Thailand, and Vietnam bringing the total to 69 completed countries and autonomous territories.

Completed countries. Click for larger view.

India is one of the most fort-dense countries in the world, so it's a big deal whenever I can complete mapping one of the Indian states. Currently I have completed 5 of the 36 states and territories. While not complete, I have mapped nearly 300 Rajasthan forts. Overall, I've mapped some 700 in India.
Additionally, I have been spending a lot of time mapping sites in China. The Great Wall and all its forts has been difficult, but I am making progress. I've mapped over 280 forts and walled cities in China, plus countless miles of the Wall itself. I also came across two categories of fortification that I didn't know existed until recently.

A Hakka Village's tulou. 

In Hong Kong, there are dozens of walled villages and in mainland China there are round fortified structures called Tulou. There is an estimated 20,000 of them! Many exist in close groups so I won't be forced to mark every single one individually, but it will still take time. Regardless, I am thankful for these discoveries, otherwise the project wouldn't be truly complete.

On the whole, I have now mapped over 14,400 sites around the world and since I have finished my #AccessDPRK project (with 53,722 places), I can spend more time working on this.

For more information and the ability to download the files of selected countries, visit my main website's page on the project.

If you have a list of forts, walled cities, or castles - particularly a list focused on a country, state/province, or era, please send it to me! I have found thousands of places, and thanks to the work of others I have been able to include thousands more. A complete map of every fortified site on earth won't happen without the help of others.

--Jacob Bogle, 3/14/17