Pictured above are maps of San Diego, Montreal, San Francisco, Copenhagen, London, Berlin, Zurich, Washington, Boston and New York City. Although these are not ordinary maps, these are Soviet made maps. During the Cold War, the Soviet Union made hundreds of thousands of maps of all most every place on Earth. These maps were filled with all kinds of detailed notes on the infrastructure and terrain in the area. Details that included were what kind of materials a bridge was made of and what it’s load bearing capacity was, the time of year certain passages in the mountains of Afghanistan would be free of snow and passable. Soviet cartographers also made notes on the local environment, for example maps of China included notes on which wells in a particular area is safe to drink, what the local vegetation was, etc. To this day it’s still unclear how many surveyors, cartographers and spies took part in this operation as the entire project was classified. The maps were never officially declassified, the existence of the maps only became known after the fall of the Soviet Union. After a couple were sold to some local businesses, international map dealers, oil and telecommunications companies were eager to buy more, specifically maps of the developing world, as there were no alternatives that came close to the level of detail Soviet maps contained.