Many people’s summer travel plans have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but you can still get a taste of places near and far through our newly-launched website, Projecting the World: An Audio Tour of the John F. Smith, III and Susan B. Smith Antique Map Collection. This website provides a virtual tour of the Smith Antique Map Collection, pairing digital images of maps and illustrations with audio commentary from their collector, Mr. Smith. This trip also involves time travel as these materials span the 16th through the 21st centuries.
Set sail for the Bahamas in this beautifully colored map from 1749. Besides the islands, the map depicts the shallow areas of the Bahama Bank and the Grand Bahama Bank, which posed a danger to ships.
Take a flight of fancy to Europe in this image that rearranges the countries of that continent to resemble a queen. This may not be useful as a map for getting around, but it is certainly an eye-catching image!
You can even do some space travel in this collection! This 2004 image of the Earth from space is one example of how human spaceflight has drastically changed our perspective on our planet.
If you want to stay closer to home, take a road trip across this marvelous map of Pennsylvania from 1775. Watch out for the Great Swamp and the Endless Mountains!
These are just a few of the many places you can explore through Projecting the World, so be sure to visit the site for more virtual travel adventures near and far.
This project, like so many things, has been interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and, as a result, the website currently only presents selected materials from the collection for which both an image and a recording are available. To view all of the items in the Smith Antique Map Collection, view the records in the library’s catalog.