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The Michelin maps of the Second World War

If, during the First World War, the recent mapping Michelin still has not been influenced by the conflict (except the excellent series of Michelin's illustrated guides to the Battlefiels whose first titles were published before the signing of the armistice). It is not the case during the period 1939 -1945, or fund Michelin known for its accuracy and quality of its updates was quickly put to use by the military.

The first map "thematic".

By the early events, Michelin amends 4 maps near the north-eastern border. sheets 51, 53, 57 and 87.
The 53 and 57 have an extra fold half stuck to the right of the fold 20 for 53 and left the fold 1 for 57. And for the 4, the boundary is highlighted with pink. The back of the envelope fold this text: Michelin maps currently required.

overview of the additions of sheets 53 and 57, in the center, the text printed on the back additions.
feuilles Michelin 53 et 57 avec plis ajoutés

Below the normal sheet 57 in 1939.

And below the sheet added with the borders underlined, this map is also without the leaflet said.
Carte 57 1939 avec pli ajouté

German maps.

The Germans were quick to use the potential of Michelin maps. In 1940, they reproduce the maps of the 1938 edition of Michelin. These maps are grouped into 4 pockets each shown a quarter of France, (see picture below) and a serie for Belgium and Holland including the all new maps of Holland described below.
Calepinage des cartes allemandes 1940


The colors are identical to the original Michelin sheet, but some elements were deleted: the green highlighting the "tourist route" and marks marks intermediate distance. The indications on the margins have been simplified, blue indicates an overload of the grid maps of "HQ" at the 80 000th. 3-folding is very impractical.
These leaves are numbered from 1 to 36, comprising a wide margin, which is deferred under the area covered by the cover and the sheet name (identical to that of Michelin). Bottom of the sheet is the distribution of the area covered by the series of maps contained in the pouch with the numbers of leaves, the legend directly copied from the original, but translated into German.


German map from the sheet 54 Michelin. There is a difference with the sheet Michelin, which has the legend printed on the fold 6
(right of the Channel Islands)
Carte michelin reproduite par l'armée allemande

Below, differences between the German map (above) and model ( ed Michelin 1938 below)
Différence entre carte Michelin 1938 et reproduction allemande
One of the captions translated to the left, and the original right.

distribution of the kit II; Nordwest-Frankreich.
Calepinage cartes allemandes pochette II
Note that the German sheet 14 is slightly higher than the others.

On remarque que la feuille allemande 14 est légèrement plus haute que les autres. Comparing with the distribution of the Michelin sheets on the right ,
we see that the German sheet fills the gap between the Michelin sheets 54 and 60, saving a lot in this serie.
The equivalent of the Michelin 55 is "4 blatt" which is part of the lot "NO-Frankreich".
The sheet 14 is obtained by Michelin 60 + a strip cut off at the bottom of the sheet 55, as shown below.

The new maps issued during the war.

Some maps will come in 1940, they raise some questions among collectors to their origin. They are all printed with the cover on the fold 1.

Maps of Norway and southern England.

ww2 norvegian map 1940 
map of England has had several editions between 1940 and 1941.
Editions that differ in the level of detail of the mapping.

Maps of the Netherlands.

In 1940 also appear 2 sheets covering the netherlands, these are 2 sheets with 3 different presentations for the same year.

Carte hollande partie nord - présentation 1  Carte hollande partie nord - présentation 2  Carte hollande partie nord - présentation classique
The first sheet is dated March 1940, it is marked dressé et publiée par le service géographique de l'armée,
but the design and symbolism are Michelin. The other 2 editions usually include the words Dressée par Michelin et Cie.
The first 2 have the cover printed on the fold 1. Un pli supplémentaire porte la légende et la seconde couverture.
For the latter, the fold 1 and half of the last fold has been deleted and replaced with cardboard covers classic Michelin.

The "demarcation" line.

During the occupation period, the "demarcation" line was plotted on maps 98, 99 and 9899 editions in 1940 and 1941.
WW2 michelin map with demarcation line

Below, reproduction of sheet 98 and 99, 1941 maps, use the menu below the image to zoom and move around the map.
Powered by Zoomify
Powered by Zoomify

The shortage maps.

Throughout the conflict, the issuance of maps has been steady, but because of the shortage of raw materials, some maps have been sold without their cardboard cover.
In this case, a stamp at the top of the fold 1 recalls the imposed price .
shortage michelin map WW2 shortage michelin map WW2
In 1944, those who appear without cover being overweight printed on the first fold that recalls the name of the publisher, numbers 51 and 52 which fold 1 is occupied by the sea take a reminder of the logo of the coverage or full coverage. last 2 are printed in 2 colors only (black and blue) instead of the 5 colors that usually used by Michelin.
two colors french Michelin roadmap 1944
Below details of the 52 map in 1944 printed in 2 colors, unlike the 51 the blue sea hatching has been deleted.
Detail sheet 52 two colors map 1944
At this time, it is not uncommon to renconter maps printed on the back of other maps, or discarded in previous years, or maps for the German army, recovered in printing.

Maps of War Office.

In view of the landing allies have largely used the wealth of information that was mapping Michelin. GSGS (Geographical Section General Staff) on conducting a series of maps of France, Belgium and Holland directly copied from the Michelin maps : colorization was simplified (the green disappears), a grid is added (Gridlines "Lambert" for France, but the border may have a different grid) Large margins are added, with a caption in English, a scale in kilometers and miles, some indications of use, the list of adjacent maps, especially the method of folding ..(which is the practice folding patented by Michelin). These sheets will retain the numbering Michelin.
below the 84 sheet Marseille - Menton
sheet 84 War Office map 1943 N° 84
Above angle top / left of the sheet"war Office" 84 .
war office roadmap WW2
Below entries at the bottom of the sheet 78.
extract of the shhet 78 war office map WW2

Restrictions of Lambert grids for France and that used by Americans in Germany listed on sheet 62.
labert grid on war office roadmap WW2

For traffic in the cities, there are the plans of the Red Guide which have been used,they are grouped in a series of 6 small books, each covering a region of France. There is even a version where each map is placed next to an aerial view of the town.
book military survey war office WW2

These booklets can be grouped and protected in a large bag oilcloth. The officers also received a copy of the 1939 Red Guide "reproducted" by the War Office.

There are also reproductions of the 1944 pre-war maps made by SGMA (?). Printed in black only on poor paper, each sheet does not reproduce that half a Michelin map, folding inconvenient is 5 and half folds. The legend is reproduced on the first folder.

Repro carte michelin imprimée par SGMA 1944 Cartouche carte SGMA 1944
Details fold 1 79map, it is the reproduction of the 1936 sheet.
Extrait carte SGMA 1944

The new after war maps.

In 1945, 7 new maps appear, the 162 and 163, West Germany and East at 1 000 000 th (the East can be only one year)
and 202 to 206 to 200 000 th overall, covering the French occupation zone and will be edited until the early 80

Part of the 162 and163 were manufactured by recycling maps planned for the German invasion of England.
Some of it reads (in french):"They had planned the invasion of England, and printed the map is back.
But ... they had not anticipated that we would use the other side to print a map to invade their country.
"
WW2 michelin maps printed on garmans military maps

The latest post-war.

At the end of war, many bridges and roads were destroyed or damaged, a series of maps "routes rapides", who appeared before war was renamed "routes et ponts", it proposes to make the "inventory of barriers to movement on the road network. The first edition was published in January 1945 and will be followed by 3 updates in April, June and August of that year, then 2 in 1946, and an annual publication until 1951.
Couverture road an bridges map Michelin
Legend affixed to the first editions "Routes et Ronts" of 1945.
legent on the roamap Michelin roads and bridges
Extract from the sheet 96 Routes et Ponts
extract of Michelin 96 routes et ponts de 1945

On maps at 200 000, the postponement of the destruction of bridges, will add the location of mined areas and localities damaged. These entries will disappear gradually over the reconstruction, some will persist until the early 60s.

above extract from the sheet 51 , 1945, 1945 2 et 1946
Evolution of mined areas on maps Michelin

The historic maps.

in 1947, four maps commemorating the main activities for the liberation of France in 1944-45 appear, facsimiles will be made in 1994, these maps are still available. The map 102 "Battle of Normandy" is the only one that has received a cover in English.
michelin map battle of normandy
michelin map battle of provence
michelin map battle of alsace
michelin map road to liberty

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