Migration Maps

Embellish family history with illustrative maps that express your unique evolution. Data visually comes alive, becomes accessible, and creates a legacy for gifts, tributes, and reunions.

An illustrator for many years, I have built a library of original regional, national, and international map masters. So I can offer creative images at affordable fees, averaging around $200. and $300. each.

From  your data, I can depict your journey and express your story visually, contributing to your family heritage. (See samples below.)

Each project is custom, so a few questions can help you begin:

1. What is your time frame? Perhaps the earliest birth date of an ancestor might be a good starting point. Another approach may be to use immigration dates.

2. How many surnames and/or individuals to include? This may be the most difficult of the parameters to define without some design considerations. Based on the amount of your data, this decision may need discussion.

3. What is the geographic range? Having the birth and death locations of ancestors will help define the scope of the map viewpoint and the layout choices.

Please email me, and I will help you define an approach and provide a quotation to fit your parameters.


Most American families have ancestors that immigrated in waves. A map can show the various branches in context. Here are several recent projects that display some of the design possibilities.

• Family Branch
Depicting the immigrant ancestors of a single person is the simplest Immigration Map. Most people know of their family histories beginning with ancestor relatives, so a tribute begins the preservation of these origins. It visually describes the convergence that expands to become part of its historic backdrop.

German Family Migration: 1840–1860” corresponds to major waves, expressed for one family of descendants. Examining these immigrants reveals a story of political persecution. Many from border towns between France and German territories, theirs are stories of survival, endurance, determination, and willingness to take a risk for opportunity. Millions had similar motivations, but the individual brings it into relevance, and demonstrates the origins of a culture that formed values.
1. Focus: Ancestors of single person
2. Kind: four surnames, great-grandparents, year of immigration
3. Range: Cross-Atlantic, Germany to Wisconsin and Illinois

• Single Surname
The history of one family surname can represent the others in its major path. Whether migration within one country or cross-ocean immigration, by highlighting individuals along the way become visual anchor points. A combination time-line with map illustration, historic research can be incorporated into the structure.

Following Fuller” traces one surname that is lucky enough to have records back to 35 generations. Though this map covers a very long period of time, it is very focused. The Fuller name, via the Mayflower, has spread throughout the United States, even with societies and museums devoted to the pilgrims. Since are twelve generations with a common heritage of over 1,000 years. From the data, the pivotal individuals emerge—ofter participating in famous events. Branches from these points could full history books. 
1. Focus: Ancestors for a single surname
2. Kind: Cross-Europe migration, great-grandparents, year of travel
3. Range: Europe to U.S. covering 1,000 years

• Historic Exodus
To document a historic progression, a single source of emigration expands territory as immigrants. Transplanted, the new communities echo the old in family clusters. Defining the family surname source is like defining “home.” Divided families become more global, each migration reveals and identity through its motivation. This map approach takes the most data of the three samples. Some of these pioneers are from the intermarrying between the ten surnames, and most descendant families today can claim more than one of these progenitors.

Tribute to First Immigrant Pioneers” connects the ten families who built Züscher-Hammer to their first wave of immigrant descendants. Sprinkled across the American landscape from New Jersey to Minnesota, they were pioneers on frontiers, and continued their tradition to build towns and enterprises. Skilled, industrious, and rugged, they were well equipped to handle homesteading. This illustration is part of a series that traces these families as hidden heros of progress that are foundational to the building of American culture.
1. Focus: Descendants from one village to eight pioneering sites
2. Kind: Ten surnames, first immigrants to U.S. during 1840’s and 50’s
3. Range: Midwest and north Eastern U.S.

See more historic illustrations and genealogical stories that breath life into numbers.

—Always inspired, Liane

Contact • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Liane Sebastian wears an artist’s hat, designer’s coat, and editor’s shoes.

e-mail: lianesebastian9@gmail.com
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