The Project

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The Every Square Inch of Norfolk Project is the decade-long history-geography project begun in 2003 under the direction of Irwin Berent and designed to document precisely that: every part — every square inch — of the vast city known today as Norfolk, Virginia, including its early expansions and all its annexations. Not just the "downtown" of the city, but all of the city. And to carry out this gargantuan task, more than 2000 historic maps, photographs, articles, deeds, advertisements, books, and other documents have been copied, transcribed or culled and published into about 18 books.

The depth and variety of books produced represents the most ambitious project of history-geography ever attempted for Norfolk — and it is one of the most unusual projects of its kind in the field of geography...for any American city, much less one of the greatest harbors and most historic regions in the world.

Norfolk History Publishers is the publisher of the books, and this website offers readers an easy way to purchase any of these books as well as to access additional information and resources pertinent to Norfolk history and geography but discovered after the publication of the book(s) or otherwise unable to be included in the book(s).

About half the books produced are devoted to a single key aspect of the geographic history of the city: for example, its maps, waters, land, agriculture, military, transporation, etc. (Click here for a full description of these books.)

The other half approximately are devoted to particular regions of the city, based on each part that was separately annexed into what is today the city of Norfolk. Beginning with the area of the original town, then the expansions of the borough, and finally the nine areas annexed into the city, each book separately details the history-geography of one or more of those sections. (Click here for a full description of these books.)


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