About LOGAR

Editors: Steven A. Wernke (Vanderbilt University) and Jeremy Mumford (Brown University)

LOGAR is a geographical index and map of places relevant to Andean studies. It focuses initially on the towns established during the mass colonial resettlement program known as the Reducción General de Indios (General Resettlement of Indians) of the Viceroy Francisco de Toledo. The Reducción forcibly resettled approximately 1.4 million native Andeans into over 1,000 reducción (literally, “reduction”) towns. Reducciones were founded (at least nominally) during the Visita General (Toledo’s tour of inspection and resettlement) between 1570 and 1575. The scope of LOGAR is initially limited to the area under most direct jurisdictional control of Viceroy Toledo—specifically, the audiencias of Lima and Charcas. Following its introduction, LOGAR will be continuously updated by edited contributions by scholars of Andean history in various countries, who have expressed interest in having a tool and repository such as LOGAR.

As a reference work, LOGAR is organized by an alphabetical index of places and a map of place locations. Users may browse both located and unlocated places. The concept of place is thus central to its organization. Following the conventions of the ancient Mediterranean world, LOGAR defines places as “geographical and historical contexts for names and locations” [1, 2]. Places may refer to discrete, locatable features in the physical world, such as a town or road. But they are not only such features. Places can be jurisdictional entities without discrete spatial footprints, or any geographical, spatial, or historical context that is imbued with human experience. This place concept is attributed most proximately to the geographer Yi Fu Tuan [3].

Thus, places are not (or at least not only) locations; places may in fact be un-locatable. Very few maps survive from the sixteenth-century Andes, and places are almost never precisely located in colonial archival textual sources. Places are instead most often “located” by names (toponyms), which may or may not have been coevally or subsequently mapped or survived to the present. In cases in which a place is not yet or cannot be located in LOGAR, its entry is listed in the alphabetic listing of places, with no corresponding location on the map. Each place entry cross-references instances of its mention in textual sources. As a practical matter, this concept enables inclusion of places that are not (at least currently) locatable, or preferably not represented as discrete points or features on a map. Therefore, many places catalogued in LOGAR are not currently located, but they may be in the future, as knowledge expands and as scholars contribute to LOGAR.

Other place-names in archival texts do not refer to spatially bounded entities but, instead, to micro-ethnic groups constituting administrative jurisdictions. For instance, a repartimiento most often referred to an ethnically identified population granted in encomienda (a trusteeship of indigenous labor) to a Spanish encomendero (trustee). A repartimiento could comprise the population of a single reducción town, several reducción towns, or parts of several reducción towns; in such cases, families within the same reducción belonged to different repartimientos. LOGAR takes the editorial position that such instances should be located approximately (and indicating as such) when possible, with iterative locational revisions as new information is contributed by the LOGAR community.

LOGAR builds directly on the open source code base and architecture of the Syriac Gazetteer. LOGAR is extensible (spatially and temporally), and over the long term, aims to serve as a more general repository and research tool of broad utility to the scholarly community of the Andean region.

  1. [1] http://pleiades.stoa.org/places
  2. [2] http://sgillies.net/blog/1055/whats-an-un-gis/
  3. [3] Y. Tuan 1975, “Place: An Experiential Perspective,” Geographical Review, 65:151-165.