A charming pocket atlas with chromolithographed maps on 64 pages, accompanied with text 328 pages, describes in details all the Ottoman vilayets and their population, embracing the area between North Africa, throught the Arabian Peninsula, Levant, Turkey and part of the Balkan Peninsula.Maps in text show the island Samos and the Hejaz Vilayet with a planned railway (The Hejaz Railway).
İbrahim Hilmi Çığıraçan (d 1876, Tulçe town, Romania – June 12, 1963, Istanbul), born in Tulcea, today in Romania, was one of the first publishers in the Ottoman Empire. Opening his publishing shop in 1896 in Istanbul, under the name Kitaphane-i Islami (Islamic Library), Hilmi Bey started publishing mostly religious books.
Under the Young Turks regime, in the Second Constitutional Era, he became interested in military, geography and history, and changed the name of the press to Kitaphane-i İslam ve Askeri (Islamic and Military Library). Hilmi Bey published about 200 military books in 15 years. He was also publishing school books, which were during the war often sent for free to poor children in Anatolia.
The first big loss for Hilmi’s workshop was the governmental change of the Ottoman letters for the Latin ones and a law, that all the law and school books should be printed by the government. During his lifetime Hilmi published more than 1000 books on history, literature, politics, religion and social issues. He also authored five atlases, with this one, The Pocket Atlas of the Ottoman Empire, being his first one.
References: OCLC 15081428, 1014526531, 313134395, 949450635, 745200026 (some entries on Worldcat wrongly dated 1905); ÖZEGE 13008; Osmanlı coğrafya literatürü tarihi. History of Geographical Literature during the Ottoman Period, 2000, p. 589. No. 5.