Cornfield Meet

Things collide here.

Google Maps: Dude, Where’s My Canton?

About 10 o’clock this morning, Jenn asked me to grab her a set of directions to someplace in downtown Canton. (Canton, OHIO, just to be clear.)

Clickety-click, typety-type, and Google Maps is being its usual helpful self.

Except that downtown Canton seems to be something other than, well, Canton:

(click to enlarge)

(click to enlarge)

“Colesville?” Huh. That’s weird. Maybe it’s like one of those outdated neighborhood names or something that just happens to be right where the pinpoint falls on the map, and the “Canton” label will show up as I zoom out.

Nope, still Colesville.

Nope, still "Colesville."

Odd. Let’s pull back more…

Okay, this is getting silly.

Okay, this is getting silly.

Okay, so now I’m really intrigued and wondering where this glitch came from and what the deal is, so I start fiddling about.

I do a Google Maps search for Canton Ohio and get this:

Um... no.

Um... no.

That’s actually Massillon. (And given the century-plus rivalry between the two cities, I think the juxtaposition is pretty damn funny.)

And Colesville’s not something attached to that particular ZIP code, either: Google Maps ZIP code searches for all the Canton-area codes turn up maps with the same Colesville label.

More weirdness: Search for Colesville, with no state name, and Google Maps treats you to Colesville, Ohio at the top of the list, with four other out-of-state possibilities.

I turn to MapQuest. Whew:

Hey, there it is!

Hey, there it is!

Next, I do a MapQuest search for Colesville, OH, 44701. I get this:

Click to enlarge if you want.

Click to enlarge if you want.

Hm. Maybe there IS something to this “Colesville” thing. Of course, I did tell MapQuest to look for Colesville at that ZIP code. I wonder if that generated the label. Let’s try something…

Clickety-click, typety-type:

Weve got the droids youre looking for.

We've got the droids you're looking for.

Huh. “Robot Parade, OH” it is, then. Great.

So, “44701” on MapQuest generates a peachy-keen normal Canton-labeled map, and, in fact, looking on that site for Colesville, Ohio, gets you nothing:

Will the REAL Colesville, Ohio please stand up?

Will the REAL Colesville, Ohio please stand up?

Now, I’ve heard about the fake streets that can be used to red-flag copyright violators, but seriously, this isn’t a cul-de-sac somewhere between wheat fields – it’s a Whole Freaking City.

Or if there is some kind of bizarre historic significance or a link between the seemingly-nonexistent Colesville, Ohio – though it’s mentioned in the 1875 book “The Birds and Seasons of New England” and in a 1855 newspaper article -and Canton, I’d love to hear it.

So, seriously, Google Maps? Where’d Canton go? Jenn’s supposed to be picking up lunch on her way home and I’d hate to think she’s lost in Colesville.

October 23, 2009 - Posted by | geek, Ohio, photos, Travel, Web/Tech | , , , , ,

8 Comments »

  1. [...] Google Maps: Dude, Where’s My Canton? « Cornfield Meet johnbooth.wordpress.com/2009/10/23/google-maps-dude-wheres-my-canton – view page – cached About 10 o’clock this morning, Jenn asked me to grab her a set of directions to someplace in downtown Canton. (Canton, OHIO, just to be clear.) — From the page [...]

    Pingback by Twitter Trackbacks for Google Maps: Dude, Where’s My Canton? « Cornfield Meet [johnbooth.wordpress.com] on Topsy.com | October 23, 2009 | Reply

  2. I went through this same exact process!!! Where the heck is Canton? :(

    Comment by Joe | October 23, 2009 | Reply

    • It’s just plain bizarre, right?

      Comment by jrbooth | October 23, 2009 | Reply

  3. I always said that Canton was a mass-experienced delusion! Finally, the veil has been lifted! You should have never taken the red pill, John!

    Comment by Kink | October 26, 2009 | Reply

    • There is no spoon? Dang!

      Comment by jrbooth | October 26, 2009 | Reply

  4. [...] Colesville and Google Maps So my note about Canton becoming Colesville caught some eyes on Twitter and a few forums, and Fox 8 (WJW) up in Cleveland has a short story [...]

    Pingback by Canton, Colesville and Google Maps « Cornfield Meet | October 26, 2009 | Reply

  5. [...] on the map: Canton, Ohio Canton’s finally banished the Spectre of Colesville: (Mostly) fixed. Click to [...]

    Pingback by Back on the map: Canton, Ohio « Cornfield Meet | October 30, 2009 | Reply

  6. It is strange and ironic that Google’s technology created the error, and after a week, can’t fix it… hmmm…

    Comment by Guytano Parks | October 30, 2009 | Reply


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