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Great Trading Routes of the Sahara
This 1889 map of trans-Saharan trading routes by French explorer Edouard Blanc reflects the growing priority that Europeans gave to land-based trade during the late 19th-century imperial “scramble for Africa.” In articles about his work, Blanc stressed the importance of identifying “natural” geographic routes that would connect French colonial possessions in west Africa, such as Senegal, to Algeria in north Africa, and link the Mediterranean coast to Sudan and central Africa. Blanc based his maps not only on his own travels but also on nearly a century of reports from ...
Contributed by
Library of Congress
Guide to Kiev and Its Environs, Including an Address Section, Map and Phototype Views of Kiev
This 1890 guidebook provides comprehensive information for visitors to Kiev. It includes a history of the city and details of places of interest, such as Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, the cathedrals and other churches, historical monuments, public gardens and wooded areas, public and administrative buildings, and bridges over the Dnieper River. Included is useful information for travelers, such as timetables for trains, steamships, and other passenger transport and a directory for hotels, restaurants, doctors, banks, stores, baths, libraries, clubs, and city and church authorities. The guide anticipates by 24 years Baedeker’s ...
Contributed by
National Parliamentary Library of Ukraine
Guide to the Great Siberian Railway
The 8,000-kilometer Trans-Siberian Railway linking Ekaterinburg in the Ural Mountains with the Pacific port of Vladivostok is the world’s longest railroad. Construction began in 1891 and was completed in 1916. By 1900, much of the line was finished and open for traffic. In that year, the Russian Ministry of Ways of Communication issued, in identical English and Russian editions, this illustrated guide to the railway. It includes a history of Siberia, an account of the construction, and a detailed listing of the towns and cities along the route.
Contributed by
National Library of Russia
Letter from Otto Ringling, October 26, 1907
Otto Ringling (1858–1911) was the son of a German immigrant who, with his brothers Albert, Alfred, Charles, John, August, and Henry, created the Ringling Bros. circus empire in the late 19th century. The brothers bought the competing Barnum & Bailey Circus in 1907. They ran the circuses separately at first, but merged them in 1919 to create the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, which came to be known as “the Greatest Show on Earth.” This letter, written by Otto to his brothers in October 1907, details how the assets ...
Contributed by
Illinois State University's Special Collections, Milner Library
Tokareva House, Built around 1900, Detail of Main Facade, Perm', Russia
This view of the main façade of the Tokareva house at No. 67 Kirov (formerly Permskaia) Street in Perm' was taken in 1999 by Dr. William Brumfield, American photographer and historian of Russian architecture, as part of the "Meeting of Frontiers" project at the Library of Congress. Established in the 1720s as a factory settlement on the middle reaches of the Kama River, Perm' (so named in 1781) is one of Russia's largest cities. Before the 1917 revolution, Perm’ was the center of a large and prosperous merchant community ...
Contributed by
Library of Congress
William “Buffalo Bill” Cody
William Fredrick “Buffalo Bill” Cody (1846–1917) was at different times a trapper, miner, Pony Express rider, scout, wagon master, stagecoach driver, legislator, and Civil War soldier. He earned his nickname, Buffalo Bill, because of his skill in supplying the Kansas Pacific Railroad with buffalo meat for its workers; in 18 months, he killed more than 4,000 buffalos. In 1883, he started the Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show in Omaha, Nebraska, using cowboys and Native Americans to portray scenes from the West. The show recreated daring rescues, heroic ...
Contributed by
The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art
Representatives of the First Iranian Parliament
This photograph shows the representatives of the first Iranian Majles (parliament) in front of the military academy, which served as the first parliament building. In the 1870s–early 20th century, leading political figures in Iran concluded that the only way to save country from government corruption and foreign manipulation was to make a written code of laws, an attitude that laid the foundation for the Iranian Constitutional Revolution of 1905–7. The movement for a constitution bore fruit during the reign of Muẓaffar ad-Dīn Shah of the Qajar dynasty, who ...
Contributed by
National Library and Archives of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Book of Effects of Drugs
This work is a lithographic print of a manuscript containing a treatise on pharmacology. It was produced in Kabul, in the Royal Printing House, by Ṣāliḥ ibn Ṣāliḥ Muḥammad and Sardār Gul Muḥammad Khān. Ṣāliḥ ibn Ṣāliḥ Muḥammad was an officer and commander from the Muhammadzai clan in the Pashtun tribal confederacy that ruled Afghanistan in the Barakzai period (1826–1973) after the fall of the Durrani Dynasty in 1842. Sardār Gul Muḥammad Khān served as the chief editor of the printing press in Kabul, where his activities included publishing ...
Contributed by
Library of Congress
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
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 ...
Contributed by
Columbus Memorial Library, Organization of American States
Titusville, Pennsylvania, 1896
This panoramic map shows Titusville, Pennsylvania, as it appeared in 1896. Located in western Pennsylvania, Titusville is known as the place where the modern oil industry began. In 1859, the recently formed Seneca Oil Company hired retired railroad conductor Edwin L. Drake to investigate suspected oil deposits near Titusville. Drake used an old steam engine to drill a well that began the first large-scale commercial extraction of petroleum. By the early 1860s, western Pennsylvania had been transformed by the oil boom. The numbered index at the bottom of the map ...
Contributed by
Library of Congress