Could You Hand Draw a Map of Your Hometown?

We put readers to the test.

We all like to think we know our towns and cities pretty well. I, for example, can tell you every bar in my neighborhood and which ones are gross and which ones charge too much for beer. I could draw you a map of them, and label them nicely. But my map would probably be wrong. We have mental maps of cities, but they’re often based on landmarks and memories more than the actual layout of a place.

To see just how good (or bad) people are at remembering their cities, we asked Atlantic readers to draw, from memory, their hometowns. No cheating, no peeking at Google Maps, no glances at the almanac. Here's what they came up with.

To read more about the science of mental maps, check out this piece by Elizabeth Preston that inspired this whole project.