107 results in English
Inter-American Highway
The Inter-American Highway is the portion of the Pan-American Highway system that runs from Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, to Panama City, Panama, a total of 5,390 kilometers. The First Pan American Congress of Highways took place in October 1925 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, under the auspices of the Pan American Union. The congress was followed by a program of surveys and further meetings to discuss development of an inter-American highway system. In October 1929, representatives of the Central American countries, Mexico, and the United States met in Panama to establish ...
Map of the Mayance Nations and Languages
This circa-1934 map, prepared for Maya Society Quarterly and printed by the National Printing Office, Guatemala, shows the distribution of the Mayance (Mayan) nations and languages in present-day southern Mexico, Guatemala, and western Honduras in the period from about 1000 to 1500. The map is based on the research of William E. Gates (1863–1940), an American Mayanist and collector of Mesoamerican manuscripts who worked for many decades on deciphering Maya hieroglyphic writing. Among the languages mapped by Gates are Maya (now known as Yucatec Maya), Cholti, Q'eqchi', and ...
Products of Mexico and Central America
This black-and-white sketch map showing the products of Mexico and Central America was prepared for publication in the Bulletin of the Pan American Union. It is now preserved in the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States, successor organization to the Pan American Union. Typed or written on the map are the locations of centers of both agricultural and mineral production. The map shows mineral production located mainly in Mexico, with asphalt, coal, gold, lead, petroleum, precious stones (opals), quicksilver (mercury), and silver listed. Mexico is also shown ...
Map of the Argentine Railways
Between 1880 and 1915, the Argentine railroad network expanded from 1,388 miles (2,234 kilometers) to 22,251 miles (35,809 kilometers) in length, making it the longest on the continent of South America and the eighth longest in the world. Railroads played a key role in economic development and national consolidation and made possible Argentina’s emergence as a major exporter of wheat, beef, and other products. The most important railroads were owned and built by British companies, which were granted concessions by the Argentine government because of ...
Argentine Railways, 1899
Intensive railroad development took place in Argentina between 1880 and 1916, a period of rapid economic growth and national consolidation. The railroads made possible Argentina’s emergence as a major exporter of wheat, beef, and other products. The most important railroads were owned and built by British companies, which were granted concessions by the Argentine government because of their technical expertise and their ability to raise large sums on the London market to finance the construction. This 1899 map, issued by the Buenos Ayres and Pacific Railway Company, of London ...
Map of Bolivia
This 1894 map of Bolivia highlights the country’s main geographic features, including the Andes Mountains in the west and the lowlands in the east. The map shows major towns and cities, the capitals of departments, departmental borders, completed and projected railroads, highways, and navigable rivers. Mines for copper, gold, silver, and tin are indicated, reflecting Bolivia’s role as a major mineral producer. Neighboring parts of Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Chile, and Peru are shown. Territory in the northeastern part of the country, near the border with Brazil, is identified ...
Map of Bolivia, Showing Forest and Agriculture Areas, and Mineral Localities
This 1912 map shows the agricultural, forest, and mineral wealth of Bolivia. Mineral production is shown as located mainly in the western part of the country, in or near the Andes Mountains. The locations of mines producing antimony, bismuth, copper, gold, lead, silver, wolfram, and tin, Bolivia’s most important mineral product, are indicated. Tin was mined in the departments of Cochabamba, La Paz, Oruro, and Potosí. Production boomed in the late-19th century–early 20th century, as the extension of the rail line to Oruro made possible the export of ...
Colton’s Peru and Bolivia
This 1855 map of Peru and Bolivia shows topographical features, cities, towns, forts, rapids, and rivers. National and regional boundaries are marked in pink, green, yellow, and blue. An inset map of Lima, the capital of Peru, appears in the lower-left-hand corner. In the upper right are the River Madeira, forming part of the border between Peru and Brazil, and the Amazon, the upper parts of which are known in Peru as the Marañón and in Brazil as the Solimões. A note indicates the navigability of the River Ucayali up ...
Map of the Republic of Colombia
This 1891 map of Colombia depicts the main physical features and administrative divisions of the country. It shows national and departmental borders, the capitals of departments, other cities, villages, railroads (completed and projected), and highways. Present-day Panama, which did not become independent until 1903, is still shown as a department of Colombia. The railroad across the Isthmus of Panama, from Colón to Panama City, is indicated, but the Panama Canal has not yet been built. The eastern part of the country is shown as thinly settled and not well mapped ...
Map of the Republic of Costa Rica
This 1891 map of Costa Rica shows the main physical features and administrative divisions of the country. The key, in the upper-right-hand corner, is in Spanish and English. Indicated on the map are the national capital, San José; provincial capitals; principal cities; minor cities; and railroads (in operation, under construction, projected, and “contracted for and soon to be built”). The highest mountains, volcanoes, and craters are indicated by the numbered key, and their heights given (inaccurately) in both feet and meters. The country’s seven provinces—Alajuela, Cartago, Guanacaste, Heredia ...
Map of the Dominican Republic
The division of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola into the Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic and French-speaking Haiti goes back to the Treaty of Ryswick of 1697, under which Spain transferred the western third of what was then the Spanish colony of Santo Domingo to France. In the Treaty of Aranjuez of 1777, the French and Spanish empires defined precisely the border between their respective territories on the island. Part of the present-day border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic still follows the line negotiated in 1777, but adjustments to the border ...
Costa Rica
This map of Costa Rica was published by the International Bureau of the American Republics (instituted in 1910 as the Pan American Union), an agency established in 1890 in Washington D.C., by resolution of the International Conference of American States. The bureau published handbooks, maps, and a monthly bulletin for disseminating information relating to the promotion of trade among the countries of the Americas. The map shows the routes of steamship lines from the ports of Limon, Puntarenas, and San Juan del Sur (Nicaragua); undersea telegraph cables; railroads; and ...
Costa Rica - from Official and Other Sources
This 1903 map of Costa Rica was published by the International Bureau of the American Republics (instituted in 1910 as the Pan American Union), an agency established in 1890 in Washington D.C., by resolution of the International Conference of American States. The bureau issued handbooks, maps, and a monthly bulletin for disseminating information relating to the promotion of trade among the countries of the Americas.  The map shows physical features, such as rivers, lakes and mountains, international and provincial borders, and the routes of steamship lines from the port ...
Cuba
This detailed map of Cuba was published by the Rand McNally Company of Chicago in 1904. It shows provinces, principal cities and towns, and the 18 railroads then in operation in the country. The six provinces are indicated by different colors. A large inset map in the upper right shows the port and city of Havana; the key at the bottom of the main map indicates points of interest in Havana. Smaller inset maps depict Port Matanzas; Cardenas and Santa Clara Bays; the Port of Cienfuegos; and the Port of ...
El Salvador - from Official and Other Sources
This 1903 map of El Salvador was published by the International Bureau of the American Republics (instituted in 1910 as the Pan American Union), an agency established in 1890 in Washington D.C., by resolution of the International Conference of American States. The bureau issued handbooks, maps, and a monthly bulletin for disseminating information relating to the promotion of trade among the countries of the Americas. The map shows the capital city of San Salvador; the capitals of departments and other important cities; international and departmental borders; submarine cables, telegraph ...
Railway Map of Jamaica
This map, produced in the 1920s by the Transportation Department of the United States Department of Commerce, shows the railroads and rail stations of Jamaica, at that time a crown colony within the British Empire. Also shown are the island’s main roads and its three counties—Cornwall, Middlesex, and Surrey—and their borders. The scale of the map is in statute miles (1 mile = 1.61 kilometers). The Western Jamaica Connecting Railway was built in 1845. Running from Kingston to Angels, a distance of some 23 kilometers, it was ...
Military Map, Island of Puerto Rico
This military map of Puerto Rico was published in 1898, the year in which the United States, in the course of the Spanish-American War, seized the island from Spain. Hostilities began on May 12 with a blockade and bombardment of the city of San Juan by the U.S. Navy. This was followed with the landing off the coast of Guánica on July 12 of a force of 1,300 U.S. soldiers. In the peace treaty that was signed in Paris on December 10, 1898, the United States formally ...
West India Islands and the Approaches to the Panama Canal
This large folding map, issued by the London Geographical Institute during World War I, shows the islands of the Caribbean Sea and the approaches to the Panama Canal. The canal had opened to traffic in early 1914, shortly before the outbreak of the war. Protection of the canal against possible sabotage by Germany was a concern of U.S. military planners in World War I and, especially, during World War II. The map shows telegraph lines, undersea cables, and the distances in nautical miles of steamer routes from the key ...
British Guiana
This map, prepared and printed in 1908 at the office of the Ordnance Survey, Southampton, United Kingdom, provides a relatively detailed view of the geography of British Guiana (present-day Guyana), one of only two British colonies on the mainland of South and Central America (the other being British Honduras). A note indicates that the portion of the map north of 5° North latitude is from a map prepared by the government surveyor of British Guiana, while the remainder of the map “has been compiled from various sources and is less ...
Railroad Map of British Honduras
This map, produced in the 1920s by the Transportation Department of the United States Department of Commerce, shows the railroad network of British Honduras (present-day Belize). Under the Treaty of Versailles of 1783, the Spanish Empire granted Britain the right to harvest timber in the region between the Hondo and Belize Rivers. In 1862 the crown colony of British Honduras was established. Apart from British Guiana, it was the only British possession on the mainland of Latin America. The colony was important to Britain chiefly as a source of logwood ...
Map of the Eastern Republic of Uruguay, 1893
This 1893 map of the República Oriental del Uruguay (Eastern Republic of Uruguay), as the country is officially called, shows railroad lines (both in operation and under construction), telegraph lines, and submarine cables; and provinces and provincial boundaries. Relief is shown by hachures. The map provides navigational information relating to the Rio de la Plata, including water depths in meters and the location and visibility of lighthouses. Originally part of the Spanish Viceroyalty of the Rio de La Plata that also included Argentina, Paraguay, and parts of Bolivia, Brazil, and ...
Uruguay
This map of Uruguay was published by the International Bureau of the American Republics (instituted in 1910 as the Pan American Union), an agency established in 1890 in Washington D.C., by resolution of the International Conference of American States. The bureau published handbooks, maps, and a monthly bulletin for disseminating information relating to the promotion of trade among the countries of the Americas. The map shows international borders with Brazil and Argentina, major cities and towns, provinces and provincial borders, railroads, undersea telegraph cables, navigable rivers, and the route ...
Railroad Map of Trinidad
This map, produced by the Transportation Department of the United States Department of Commerce in 1925, shows the railroad network of Trinidad. The main rail line in Trinidad was the Trinidad Government Railway, which originally was built in 1876 to connect the major city of Port of Spain with Arima. It later was extended to other inland towns. In addition to railroad lines and tramways, the map shows towns and counties and county boundaries. Originally claimed for Spain by Christopher Columbus in 1498, Trinidad was seized by Britain in 1797 ...
West Indies Showing Sovereignty of the Various Islands
This undated map of the West Indies from the first half of the 20th century was produced by the Military Intelligence Division of the General Staff of the U.S. Department of the Army. It shows U.S., British, French, and Dutch possessions in the region, along with principal trade routes, undersea telegraph cables owned by Britain and the United States, and the location of government and privately owned radio stations. Defense of the Caribbean against possible incursions by hostile European powers was a major concern of U.S. military ...
Map of the Colonies of Suriname and Berbice
This 18th-century map shows the Dutch plantations in Suriname and Berbice. The map is oriented with the north at the bottom. The names ascribed to locations outside the neatly demarcated plantations suggest resistance to Dutch domination by local Indians, indentured servants, and slaves imported from Africa. They include several places marked “rebel villages,” “village of runaways,” and “village of rebel slaves.” The inset map in the upper right gives a detailed view of Paramaribo, the chief city and port of Suriname.  The numbered key lists the main streets, along with ...
Sketch Map of British Guiana
Robert Hermann Schomburgk (1804–65) was a British naturalist and surveyor known for his pioneering surveys of British Guiana (present-day Guyana). Born and educated in Germany, he traveled to the West Indies in 1830 where he completed a survey of one of the Virgin Islands that was published in the Journal of the Royal Geographical Society. In 1835–39, under the direction of the Royal Geographical Society, he explored the Essequibo and Berbice Rivers in northern South America and completed a survey of British Guiana. Upon returning to Europe, he ...
Guiana and Caribana
This map of part of the northern coast of South America is a Dutch version of a map originally produced around 1650 by Nicolas Sanson (1600–1667), royal geographer to Kings Louis XIII and XIV, and commonly known as the father of French cartography. Numerous editions copied from Sanson were printed in the early 18th century. The map covers the region from the island of Trinidad and the mouth of the Orinoco River in the west to the mouth of the Amazon River in the southeast. Sanson divides this area ...
Venezuela with the Southern Part of New Andalusia
This 17th-century map of Venezuela and a part of New Andalusia, provinces of the Spanish Empire located in present-day Venezuela, is a copy of an earlier map published in Amsterdam by Henricus Hondius (1597–1651). Hondius was the son of Jodocus Hondius (1563–1612), a Flemish cartographer and engraver who settled in Amsterdam in about 1593 and established a business that produced globes and the first large maps of the world. In 1604 Hondius acquired the plates for Mercator’s world atlas and in 1606 published a new edition of ...
Map of the Colony of Berbice Located in Batavian Guiana in America between the Colonies of Demerara and Suriname
This detailed 1802 map, drawn by a Dutch military officer and issued by the distinguished Amsterdam cartographic publishing firm of Covens and Mortier, shows the Dutch colony of Berbice as it appeared at the beginning of the 19th century. Located along the Berbice River in present-day Guyana, Berbice was established in 1627 under the authority of the Dutch West India Company. The inset map in the upper left, oriented with north at the bottom, shows Berbice in relation to Suriname, its larger sister colony. The main map is oriented with ...
Map of the Whole of Guiana or the Savage Coast, and the Spanish West Indies at the Northern End of South America
This 18th-century Dutch map, produced in Amsterdam by the publisher Isaak Tirion (circa 1705–circa 1769), shows the northern coast of South American and its offshore islands, including Curaçao, Bonaire, and neighboring islands; Trinidad and Tobago; and Grenada. Guiana is divided, from west to east, into Spanish, Dutch, and French sections, corresponding roughly to a part of present-day Venezuela and present-day Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana. The territory to the south of Guiana, in present-day Brazil, is labeled as Portuguese. Three scales are given in the main map: French and ...
Gaucho Broiling Steak in the Open
This photograph shows a gaucho in traditional dress cooking meat over a homemade spit. Gaucho is a term used to denote descendants of the early Spanish colonizers who traditionally led a semi-nomadic life on the South American pampas. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 photographs illustrating life and culture in the Americas. Many of the photographs were taken by prominent photographers on OAS missions to member countries. The OAS was established in April 1948 ...
Dancing Zamba, Argentina
This photograph shows a couple in traditional costumes dancing the zamba, one of Argentina's most popular dance forms. The dance originated in Peru in the Creole genre known as the zamacueca, which was adopted in Chile as the cueca. The zamba is a slow dance in three-quarter time played primarily on guitar and bombo legüero (the indigenous Argentine bass drum). The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 photographs illustrating life and culture in the ...
Gaucho Drinking “Mate”
This photograph shows a gaucho in traditional dress pouring hot water from a kettle to make maté, a traditional drink common to Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay that is made from the yerba maté plant native to subtropical South America. In the background is a tepee-like structure. Gaucho is a term used to denote descendants of the early Spanish colonizers who traditionally led a semi-nomadic life on the South American pampas. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which ...
Traditional Bajan Music
This photograph shows drummers and flute players in a local band playing traditional folk music in a parade in Barbados, with a large crowd in the background. The parade is part of the five-week summer Crop Over festival, the most popular and colorful festival in Barbados. Its origins can be traced to the 1780s, when Barbados was a prolific sugar producer. At the end of each season, there was a huge celebration to mark the culmination of another successful sugar cane harvest, the “crop over” celebration. The photograph is from ...
Dancing
This photograph shows male and female dancers dressed in folk costume dancing around a maypole. Maypole dancing is a form of folk dance, brought to the Caribbean by the English, in which participants dance in a circle, each holding a colored ribbon attached to a pole. The ribbons are intertwined and plaited either to the pole itself or into a web around the pole. The dancers then can retrace their steps in order to unravel the ribbons. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the ...
Carnival Parade
This photograph shows a group of women, similarly dressed in bright, colorful, floral costumes, with head wraps of the same fabric, part of a band in a carnival parade in Barbados. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 photographs illustrative of life and culture in the Americas. Many of the photographs were taken by prominent photographers on OAS missions to member countries. The OAS was established in April 1948 when 21 countries of the western ...
Natives Enjoy Dancing
This photograph from Bolivia shows indigenous peoples dressed in traditional costume playing musical instruments. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 photographs illustrative of life and culture in the Americas. Many of the photographs were taken by prominent photographers on OAS missions to member countries. The OAS was established in April 1948 when 21 countries of the western hemisphere adopted the OAS Charter, in which they reaffirmed their commitment to the pursuit of common goals ...
Festival in Oruro (Bolivia)
This photograph shows a group of dancers in elaborate costumes in a band at the Carnival of Oruro in Bolivia. The carnival, which takes place every year, lasts ten days and features examples of popular arts in such forms as masks, textiles, and embroidery. The main event is the procession or entrada, in which the dancers walk the four-kilometer processional route repeatedly for a full 20 hours without interruption. In 2001, UNESCO proclaimed the Carnival of Oruro a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. The photograph is ...
Carnival in Oruro (Bolivia)
This photograph shows a carnival dancer in Oruro, Bolivia, in an elaborate costume and grotesque mask and gloves. The carnival, which takes place every year, lasts ten days and features examples of popular arts in such forms as masks, textiles, and embroidery. The main event is the procession or entrada, in which the dancers walk the four-kilometer processional route repeatedly for a full 20 hours without interruption. In 2001, UNESCO proclaimed the Carnival of Oruro a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. The photograph is from the ...
Candomblé in Bahía (Brazil) Ritual Dance
This photograph from Brazil shows a group of women in traditional dress of African origin performing a ritual dance. The dance and dress are associated with Candomblé, a religion based on African traditions, with elements borrowed from Christianity, that is practiced chiefly in Brazil. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 photographs illustrative of life and culture in the Americas, many taken by prominent photographers on OAS missions to member countries. The OAS was established ...
Candomblé in Bahia (Brazil) Omolú Daughter
This photograph from Brazil shows a woman performing a dance wearing an elaborate costume made of grass and shells, with a portion of it covering her face, and holding a broom, the handle of which is also decorated with shells and grass. The dance and the costume are associated with Candomblé, a religion based on African traditions, with elements borrowed from Christianity, that is practiced chiefly in Brazil. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 ...
The Changing of the Guard Ceremony, Parliament Hill, Ottawa
This photograph shows soldiers in ceremonial dress executing the changing of the guard ceremony at Parliament Hill in Ottawa, the capital of Canada. The photograph is from the collection of the Columbus Memorial Library of the Organization of American States (OAS), which includes 45,000 photographs illustrative of life and culture in the Americas. Many of the photographs were taken by prominent photographers on OAS missions to member countries. The OAS was established in April 1948 when 21 countries of the western hemisphere adopted the OAS Charter, in which they ...