GeoHistory Resources

J. M. Brewer's Map of Philadelphia, 1934

North Section

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Work Title:
J. M. Brewer's Map of Philadelphia, 1934
J. M. Brewer
This map of Philadelphia was created by J.M. Brewer in 1934. Brewer had a company called Property Services, Inc. that provided information about real estate conditions, presumably to local lenders, realtors, and appraisers. There are no records about the method Brewer used to collect the data other than the note at the bottom of the map legend: "All location ratings and racial concentration quotes are the opinion only of J.M. Brewer after careful investigation of the location." Brewer served at one time as chief appraiser in Philadelphia for the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. Met Life was among the biggest mortgage lenders in Philadelphia during the 1940s. Brewer also served as a map consultant to Home Owners' Loan Corporation (HOLC) and helped create the 1937 security map for Philadelphia. No doubt Brewer used this 1934 map and the data collected to create it in his work with HOLC. This map provides evidence that people outside of the federal government were making maps similar to the ones created by the HOLC even before HOLC began its City Survey in 1935.
Geography (this work):
Philadelphia, PA
Image File(s):
South:    South