Gazetteer of Historical Australian Placenames (GHAP) provides, for the first time, an aggregated searchable gazetteer of all available Australian placenames, including historical placenames, with coordinates for digital mapping, with advanced search and filter features.
It also works as a searchable index spatiotemporal of humanities information, built up from contributions from the humanities research community. Having launched at the end of 2020, this resource will continue to grow. Contributions from researchers are welcome - instructions below.
Both the gazetteer and humanities research data can be visualised on the Temporal Earth timeline, and in 3D terrain view.
The gazetteer is built from Australian National Placenames Data (ANPS). We thank ANPS for gathering this data and to Greg Windsor and David Blair for helping us make it available. TLCMap developers have parsed free text in approximately 2/3 of the 334208 places recorded to extract latitude and longitude coordinates, and to build this searchable web interface that can also be accessed as a web service delivering results as KML or GeoJSON.
The gazetteer is a valuable resource feeding into other TLCMap activity.
TLCMap developer for GHAP: Ben McDonnell
The matching the TLCMap staff have done to obtain latitude and longitude is automated. This means there may be some errors. Please contact us about any errors in places.
Of 334208 places in the ANPS data there were a few thousand that the TLCMap team could not associate with any specific point so the LGA was used instead. There remain only 1328 places for which we could not devise an automated way to find any coordinate at all. The way the coordinates were obtained is indicated in the results in the 'Original Data Source' field. In some cases ANPS also provides more detailed information on where they obtained the data.
TLCMap makes not guarantee on the quality of community contributed data submitted by users. This data remains the responsibility of the person providing it, and you must make your own judgements, such as to it's validity, completeness and fitness for purpose.
Always check licencing information and other the terms and conditions of use.
This system is not for commercial advertisement or promotion.
Data may be removed or corrected without notice.
The ability for users to add place names means that indigenous people can add any places they wish to be publicly known or to name places in language.
Anybody adding indigenous placenames should respect the wishes of indigenous people and observe protocols for consultation and protection of indigenous knowledge, places and culture. Do not add places that are secret or that could result in desecration. One suggestion to promote places but ensure they are accessed in the right way is to put the contact point to arrange access, rather than the place itself on the map (eg: if there is a traditional ochre mine called 'Red Ochre' to which guides or tours can be arranged, add the site of the organisation arranging access, and name the place 'Red Ochre Access Point' or similar, as preferred.)
The gazetteer currently includes indigenous placenames that are part of the Australian National Placenames Data. User contributions have commenced with some indigenous data sets related to language and history. We are happy to hear of any other major sources of indigenous placename data to include.
Humanities researchers, indigenous organisations, local history societies and others are welcome to contribute information about places. This could be placenames or any research that is relevant to places and that you have coordinates for. It could be an archive of photographs which people should find when searching for information about a place, a list of places certain convicts worked, a set of music venues, or just the old name of a place you happen to know. Big or small contributions are welcome. The minimum needed is a title or name, coordinates, and description. You can add as much or little data as you like, and link to the source, or your website.
Contributing your research to GHAP has the following benefits:
Note: Only point data is stored. Lines and polygons will be converted to points. This is an index of information. If your data is more detailed, complex and nuanced people should be able to access the fully featured data through the links you provide, eg: to your website, a richly featured web application, or an archive or data repository where it can be downloaded.
Any of the search features can be used alone, or in combination. In all cases, just use the magnifying glass button near the top to run the search.
Fuzzy Search The simplest search is just to put in a placename at the top and click the magnifying glass button. This will conduct a basic 'fuzzy' search. The first results will be exact matches, and then places with similar spelling will be matched (at present this similar spelling is limited to spellings starting with the same letter.)
Exact Match Just tick the exact match box to get only placenames with the precise spelling you entered.
ANPS or Community Choose 'ANPS Gazetteer' or 'Community' or both, to limit the search results to only the placenames provided by the Australian National Placenames Survey, or to datasets contributed by people in the humanities research community.
Filter Filter results by LGA, State or by a range of record IDs (this can be handy if you want to get large subsets of data exported as KML files or similar. The full dataset produces a KML file that is too large and unusable). For example, you might want to find only those places called 'Newcastle' that are within NSW. NB: you do not have specify a place name. You could simply search for all places in an LGA if you want.
Bounding Box This is another filter. On the map, click the button that has a little pencil and square on it. Use this to draw a rectangle on the map. This will put latitutes and longitudes in the bounding box fields. If you know specific coordinates you want to search within, you can just enter them directly. This will find all places within the rectangle. NB: As with other filters you can search, for example, for all places named 'Newcastle' within the bounding box, or not specifying a placename, just get all placenames within the rectangle, or all places with the rectangle and within an LGA, etc etc.
Format The results can be returned as a web page (default, if you just want to browse on the web), or as KML (good for Google Earth), GeoJSON or a CSV file (CSV files are 'comma seperated' and can easily be imported to Excel).
Search Multiple Placenames To find multiple places as one, make a plain text file (in Notepad or other text editor, with the .txt file extension) with one placename on each line, and upload it.
Web services are typically used by developers. You can construct a query using a URL (GET parameters) to return results. Note that simply doing a search through the normal GUI interface produces a URL with the same get parameters the webservice would use - simple. Eg: to fuzzy search for 'newcastle' within NSW and get the results as KML just use: http://tlcmap.org/ghap/search?fuzzyname=newcastle&state=NSW&format=kml Easy as! Here's the full details (note that filters are treated as logical AND conditions, ie: set intersection. There is no OR functionality.)
Aliases that reflect Trove web services APIs have been added for ease of use.
|name||exactq||An exact match between the input and placenames in the registry||Searching ‘Newcastle’ will only show exact matches of ‘Newcastle’ not entries such as ‘Newcastle City’|
|fuzzyname||q||A fuzzy search that first searches for entries where the placename CONTAINS the input (%input%), and then checks for placenames that SOUND LIKE the input (mysql soundex). Orders by exact match, starts with input, contains input, then most sounds like input||Can handle slight typos (eg ‘Nwecastel’), but must start with the correct letter. Needs adjusting or a better solution|
|anps_id||Exact match for an item in the registry with that anps id|
|lga||l-lga||An exact match on the LGA for registry items. Input form contains an autocomplete feature for lga.||Unsure if gazetteer contains full LGA data for all entries|
|state||l-place||Search only for entries in this state|
|from||s||Search for entries whose anps_id is equal to or greater than this value|
|to||e||Search for entries whose anps_id is equal to or less than this value|
|format||encoding||Return the result in the given format||
Formats are: html, csv, kml, json
Selecting csv will automatically download the file instead of displaying in browser
Will automatically download the results to file if download=on
|Will only work if format is kml,json, or csv
Options are on or off(default)\
Specifies how many results to display per page when viewing in browser.
Choosing a lower paging will speed up loading, as it only queries x results at a time.
Do not use for non-html formats, it will simply limit the output to x results.
If you want your kml/json results split use chunks instead.
Split the download into x chunks for kml/json
Downloads a zip file with content listed as x children, with a parent/master file referencing them
|Requires format as kml/json and download=on
Needs further testing,
not currently on the form.
Unsure of how some geographical programs can handle parent/child outputs
Specifies a bounding box to search for results within, using decimal format for latitude and longitude.
The order is
Shows results where latitude is between -34 and -33
AND longitude is between 143 and 144
Requires all 4 to have an input or it will be ignored.
Can use either commas or %2C to separate values
Gets a little confusing with negatives sometimes, will be simpler with a map widget
In Chrome, go to chrome://flags and set 'WebGL Draft Extensions' to 'Enabled'.
3D maps and Temporal Earth can take some time to load, so allow 20 seconds to start seeing something, especially on the first visit, or if you have a slow connection or old computer. It get's faster once it's loaded. Also, try refreshing the page.
A recent problem with Google Chrome disabled 3D rendering which the 3D terrain view and Temporal Earth depend on. This type of issue could happen in other browsers too. In some cases the map simply doesn't show up, and in others it gives an error message that might mention WebGL.
Visit http://get.webgl.org to verify that your web browser and hardware support WebGL.
If it doesn't, upgrade your browser. If it does you may need to change your settings. Use your favourite search engine to find how to enable WebGL in your browser, eg by searching for the phrase 'Enable WebGL'.