Showing an old 1906 map

I’m totally new to OpenStreetMap (joined just a few moments ago) and it looks brilliant. I’m not sure, however, whether I, as yet, really understand what it’s all about or whether I’m in the right place!

Our local history group wants me to put an interactive map on our computer system - we’re running a website designed using WordPress

We want to show an old, local 1906 map of the area and not a modern OS map. The idea is that members and visitors could , by clicking on buildings shown on the map, learn the history of those buildings as we research them.

My questions are, can I download and run this program onto the group’s computer and can I fit and use the 1906 map?

Or have I misunderstood what it’s all about? If I can use it, as described, then I have a lot to learn!

Thanks in advance! Be grateful for any help.

Basically no. But there’s still hope!

The map found at reflects the current time period and doesn’t include historical data. You may want to look at and see what’s available for your city. But I don’t think the basemap will be for any specific year.

However, given that you’re interested in a specific time (1906), points (old buildings) and adding your own narrative content I suggest you look for fire insurance maps. Check your local library for availability. I would then check online to see if they have been georeferenced (see here for a tutorial if not:

I’m not sure what plug-ins are available for WordPress that render maps, which you can then annotate. Best check their forum for help with that.

Hope this is of some help. has the possibility to show old maps overlayed with items tagged as “historic” from the OpenStreetMap database.
This list of maps that is shown by the website is maintained by a German team. You cannot add your own maps on the fly, but you could contact them (in English) and ask them to add it (if the copyright of your map allows that).

This is not exactly what you want, but might be a solution until you have the time to develop your own system.

OSM is not a program and OSM is not the OS map.

As such it is not clear what you are trying to do. I guess you are trying to use some of the OSM infrastructure to display an alternative map, but the client side parts of that infrastructure are mainly third party code. like the leaflet Javascript library used to implement slippy maps.

Whilst OSM servers do serve some map tiles for out of copyright OS maps, they are provided purely to assist people in getting the correct placement of features that are still present, but not available in the open data versions of modern OS maps. They are not provided as a general historic maps service for end users.

Probably is the software you are looking for.
Sure you have a lot to learn.

See these examples along the lines you may be interested in:

OSM Nottingham:
Evesham Mapped:

These share the same underlying software which uses leaflet to display a range of maps and selected clickable objects which come from OSM and are stored as Geojson on the website.

The MapWarper website ( is one way in which you can create & use a georeferenced old map.

Perhaps this site with old maps of Oakland, California is similar to what you would like to do with your 1906 map:

I can’t find the description now, but I recall reading that the old maps were digitized at high resolution, geo-referenced and then made into map tiles. The layer selection then selects which tile source to be displayed.