Hereford (Herefordshire) antique map, published by cartographer John Cary, c1812. Herefordshire is a county in the West Midlands of England. It borders Shropshire to the north, Worcestershire to the east, Gloucestershire to the south-east, and Wales to the west (the Welsh county next to Herefordshire is Monmouthshire). Hereford is a cathedral city and is the county town; it is also the largest settlement. The county is one of the most rural and sparsely populated in England. The land use is mostly agricultural and the county is well known for its fruit and cider production, and the Hereford cattle breed.
John Cary (c. 1754 – 1835) was an English cartographer. Cary served his apprenticeship as an engraver in London, before setting up his own business in the Strand in 1783. He soon gained a reputation for his maps and globes, his atlas, The New and Correct English Atlas published in 1787, becoming a standard reference work in England. In 1794 Cary was commissioned by the Postmaster General to survey England’s roads. This resulted in Cary’s New Itinerary (1798), a map of all the major roads in England and Wales. He also produced Ordnance Survey maps prior to 1805. In his later life he collaborated on geological maps with the geologist William Smith. His business was eventually taken over by G. F. Cruchley (1822–1875).