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North Korea Uncovered: The Crowd-Sourced Mapping of the World’s Most Secret State

Today’s guest post is by Ryan Moore, a Cartographic Specialist in the Geography and Map Division. Mr. Moore earned a Master’s degree in History from Cleveland State University and a Master’s of Library Science from Kent State University. He is the chief editor and a contributor for the Division’s journal, The Occasional Papers. He teaches […]

On the Trail of Mesoamerican Jade: an Archaeologist in Training

Today’s guest post was written by Katje Lattik, Archaeological Research Intern in the Geography and Map Division of the Library of Congress, who works with the Pre-Columbian objects in the Jay I. Kislak Collection of the Archaeology and History of the Early Americas. Katje was a 2015 Library of Congress Junior Fellow with a strong […]

Computing Space IV: William Bunge and The Philosophy of Maps

Today’s post is the fourth of a series called,”Computing Space,” which highlights the lives and work of many of the mostly unknown cartographers, geographers, mathematicians, computer scientists, designers and architects who had a hand in the birth of today’s computer cartography, along with some of forgotten publications from the early years of GIS. In the […]

Name Your Poison: Glyphic Designs on Maya Miniature Flasks in the Jay I. Kislak Collection

Today’s guest post was written by Graham Atkinson, a Research Volunteer in the Geography and Map Division, who works with the Pre-Columbian objects in the Jay I. Kislak Collections. He received his doctorate in mathematics from Oxford University, and has spent most of his career applying mathematical and statistical techniques to health care. Graham also […]

Book Talk: “American Geography and Geographers: Toward Geographic Science”

Please join us for a book talk with Dr. Geoffrey Martin, a leading historian of American geography, who will discuss his latest work, On the History of the Book — American Geography and Geographers: Toward Geographical Science  (Oxford, 2015). In addition to Dr. Martin’s presentation, the Geography and Map Division will provide a small exhibit featuring rare […]

Book Talk: “Mapping the West with Lewis and Clark”

Please join us for a book talk featuring the Chief of the Geography and Map Division, Ralph Ehrenberg, and Smithsonian Institution curator emeritus Herman J. Viola as they discuss their latest work, “Mapping the West with Lewis and Clark” (Levenger, 2015). The authors will present and sign copies of their book on Tuesday, January 19, […]

Charting the Gulf Stream

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) noticed something odd as Deputy Postmaster General for the American colonies in London: mail took much longer travelling west across the Atlantic than it did travelling east. Several weeks longer, in fact. In a 1746 letter, Franklin ascribes this anomaly to an effect of the Earth’s rotation, making an eastward journey faster […]

Computing Space III: Papers of the “Father of GIS” Come to the Library of Congress

Today’s post is the third of a series called,”Computing Space,” which will highlight the lives and work of many of the mostly unknown cartographers, geographers, mathematicians, computer scientists, designers and architects who had a hand in the birth of today’s computer cartography.  ’Amateur’ field geographers can speak with authority about the clarifying effects on the […]