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September 20th, 2007
Chicago Hosts Festival of Maps

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Thirty cultural organizations throughout Chicago have teamed to display thousands of maps in what is being called the Festival of Maps. The event is billed as the biggest show or rare and important maps ever assembled. The festival runs from Nov. 20 to Jan. 27. The festival is being organized by the Field Museum, the Newberry Library and private collectors. The idea grew from the initial goal of displaying history’s 100 most important maps. The organizing committee expanded its scope and booked space at the 30 participating institutions to display a variety of maps representing different themes

The Chicago Botanic Gardens will show maps related to plants, including a map that illustrates how seeds spread. The Brookfield Zoo will show maps related to wildlife. The Field Museum will stage the centerpiece exhibit, which pulls 100 maps from worldwide collections, including the Vatican, the British royal family, libraries and private collections.

Among the featured maps is the first geological map, and the 19th century map by British physicial John Snow to pinpoint the culprit in a cholera epidemic. The antique maps will be displayed alongside modern maps and mapping devices.

To learn more, visit the Festival of Maps website.

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