Project Description

About 3 hrs. north of New York City just outside of the Catskill Mountains there exists a fictitious town named Agloe, NY. First appearing on New York State roadmaps in 1925, Agloe, NY was created by cartographers Otto G. Lindberg and Ernest Alpers for the General Drafting Co. as a copyright trap to prevent the plagiarism of their map. In the 1950s, the town of Agloe would appear on a Rand McNally New York State roadmap, and shortly thereafter was threatened with a lawsuit by the General Drafting Co. for copyright infringement. But Rand Mcnally would be innocent, as the town of Agloe had entered into existence when a resident who built a store named the Agloe General Store at the exact location where the Otto G. Lindberg and Ernest Alpers had placed Agloe was registered with the Delaware County Administration.

Eventually, the Agloe General Store went out of business, but Agloe continues to appear on paper roadmaps to this day and even appeared on Google Maps until it was deleted 2014.

Through a chance meeting and subsequent interview with the last resident of Agloe, NY, historical maps, architectural drawings, postcards, photographic documentation and a Google Image search engine intervention, the larger Agloe, NY project challenges what defines reality, how we make reality, and ultimately how the fake can become real in our physical and digital worlds.