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Annual Meeting

59th Annual Meeting of the
Society for the History of Discoveries.

Great Mountains of the American West.
Golden, Colorado September 20-23, 2018.


2018 Annual Meeting

Arranged Alphabetically By Author

Once Upon a Time When Jesuits Mapped the Gold Fields

Mirela Altić
Institute of Social Sciences, Croatia

Though they did not participate in the exploitation of the mineral resources of New Spain, the Jesuits were present at the sites of mining activities, witnessing the participation of military and colonial authorities in this lucrative business. Being in charge ofthe local nations, whose members were enslaved to work in the mines, the Jesuits were well acquainted with gold and silver fields near their missions. Mining, with its high income and its need for (free) labour force, strongly influenced not only the surrounding missions, but also the military organization of the borderlands. Due to the importance of the mines, the presidios, which used to be located on the outskirts of the province,were later moved closer to the mines. The tensions in gold mining in northern New Spain reached their peak in the first decades of the eighteenth century, which resulted in frequent uprisings of the local population and subsequent military inspections with attempts at reorganization of the borderland.

A recently discovered Jesuit map, created just before the military inspection of northern New Spain carried out by Pedro de Rivera, provides us with a detailed presentation of the royal mines, and with their exact position in relation to the missions and presidios. The inclusion of military and economic information into a missionary map reflects the close connection of these issues. The increasingly frequent uprisings of the native people, who were forced to work in royal mines, and the need for their military control, required closer relations between the Jesuits and military authorities. That led to the intensified exchange of knowledge and direct cooperation in mapping activities. Jesuit (and Franciscan) missionary maps of New Spain contained more and more military information,while military maps of the same region provided more detailed information on missionary activities.

Note on contributor: Dr. Mirela Altić is a chief research fellow at the Institute of Social Sciences in Zagreb, Croatia. In the Department of History, University of Zagreb, Dr. Altic holds the rank of full professor and lectures on the history of cartography and historical geography. Besides her specialization in South Eastern and Central European map history, last few years she publishes extensively on the Jesuit cartography of Americas and conducts research in European and American Jesuit archives and libraries. She is the author of twelve books, numerous scholarly papers and a contributor to The History of Cartography Project. She is Vice-Chair of ICA Commission on the History of Cartography and Vice-President/President Elect of SHD.

Discovery by Steam:
Exploring the Early American West Using the First High Technology

John Laurence Busch
264 Oenoke Ridge, New Canaan, CT 06840  USA

In 1807, the American Robert Fulton ran the first practical, commercially successful steamboat in history.  With his North River Steam Boat, Fulton broke through an important psychological barrier: it was, in fact, possible for humans to use an artificial power to alter time and space to practical effect.  As such, steam-powered vessels represent the first “high technology” in history. But Fulton and his financial partner, Robert R. Livingston, weren’t really thinking about the Hudson (or North) River when they built this steamboat—instead, they were thinking about the West.

This paper and presentation will argue that the American Age of Discovery should be split into two distinct phases: the first relied entirely—by necessity—on natural means of movement; the second benefited greatly from the use of steam-powered vessels to either support or even carry out expeditions into the American West. This will be supported by an analysis of efforts to penetrate deeper and deeper into the American West using steamboats from ~1811 to ~1830.  Both private and publicly funded expeditions will be included.  The primary tool for analysis will be a thorough review of historical American newspapers from the period.  The analysis also will set the objective of seeking out patterns of exploration using steam vessels.  The result will be a more detailed, comprehensive understanding of how this first high technology dramatically accelerated the act of discovery in the American West. Finally, the presentation will “zoom out,” and analyze how steamboats served as the vanguard of a succession of high technologies that furthered humanity’s ability to discover.

Note on contributor: Born 1963 in Parkersburg, West Virginia, in the United States.Entered The Ohio State University in June 1981, and graduated in March 1984 with a major degree in International Studies and a minor degree in Economics.  Included studies at New College, The University of Oxford, United Kingdom.Independent historian, focusing upon the interaction between humanity and technology, particularly in the early 19th century.

Revisiting the “Mountains of Shining Rocks”
The Early Exploration and Mapping of the Rocky Mountains

Ralph Ehrenberg
Geography and Map Division, Library of Congress (Retired)

Dubbed the “Mountains of Shining Rocks” by 18th century Indians, the Rocky Mountains were a daunting challenge to early explorers and cartographers.  Extending some 3,000 miles from British Columbia to New Mexico, the Rockies are composed of massive, irregular shaped ranges with dramatic peaks rising 14,000 feet, high broad plateaus, and deep valleys created during several billion years of mountain building, volcanic activity, glaciation, and erosion. Home to Indigenous Indian Tribes, the Rockies were explored and mapped by separate groups at different times with varying perspectives and motives.  This presentation briefly traces the exploratory process of the Central and Southern Rockies through the analysis of selected contemporary maps, diagrams, and illustrations prepared by the five major groups that contributed to the early map of the Rocky Mountains: (1) Native Americans, who prepared the first guide maps of the region for Anglo-American traders and explorers; (2) army officers, dispatched by Thomas Jefferson to explore the Louisiana Purchase, 1803 – 1806; (3) fur traders and trappers, who traversed much of the region in search of their fortune; (4) army topographers, who initiated the first official surveys for trails, roads, and railroads, 1818-1863; and (5) government geologists, who carried out detailed topographical and geological surveys during the post-Civil War period. 

Note on contributor: Ralph Ehrenberg is past President and Fellow of the Society for the History of Discoveries. During his distinguished career, he directed two of the most important map collections in the world -- the Geography and Map Division of the Library of Congress and the Cartographic Records Division of the U. S. National Archives.

Ralph curated or assisted with several of the most significant exhibits about exploration and discovery ever mounted at the National Archives, Library of Congress, and Smithsonian Institution, ranging from the mapping of the North American Plains to the history of geologic mapping. He published several monumental works, including The Mapping of America (with Seymour Schwartz), the acclaimed cartographic survey of North America, Scholars' Guide to Washington, D.C. for Cartography and Remote Sensing Imagery, published by the Smithsonian Institution in 1987, and Mapping the World published by the National Geographic Society.

In addition to his work with the Society for the History of Discoveries, Ralph has also served on several major advisory councils and boards of related professional organizations, including the International Map Collector’s Society, the United States Board on Geographic Names, which he chaired for one term, and the Federal Geographic Data Committee. He is a founding member of the Washington Map Society, and served two terms as its President.Ralph also established the archives of the Association of American Geographers in 1968 and co-founded the Association’s Committee on Archives and Association History.

Demystifying Desolation: A Cartographic History of the Atacama Desert, 1700 – 1900

Richard Francaviglia
Willamette University, Salem, Oregon
3117 Lakeview Drive NW, Salem, Oregon 97304

This presentation examines 18th and 19th century maps of western South America to show how the Atacama Desert became part of the scientific and popular imagination. Although the name “Atacama” originally referred to Spain's sparsely populated political province in southern Peru and northern Chile, that changed beginning about 1700 when climate and landscape began to be factored into depictions of this arid region. Among the important cartographic milestones, Guillaume Delisle’s Carte du Paraguay, du Chili… (Paris, 1703/1708 - 1718) appears to be the first published European map delineating the “Desert  d’ Atacama.” Delisle's map soon influenced others.  By 1775, Juan Cruz de la Cano's América Meridional set a new standard in mapping this region. In the early 19th century, the Atacama Desert was becoming common on maps of South America.  The Geographical, Statistical, and Historical map of Chili (sic) by Carey and Lea (Philadelphia, 1822) calls it the “Great Desart [sic] of Atacama.”  A French version of this American map was published in Paris three years later (1825).  In 1835, Charles Darwin traversed and mapped a portion of this "very desolate" region whose mineral wealth was now luring investors.  Ironically, designating this region as "desert" appears to have steered early natural historians away from it as they were then searching for places with more abundant flora and fauna.  However, by mid-century (1849-52), Lt. J. M. Gilliss directed the U.S. Naval Astronomical Expedition to the Southern Hemisphere, making some observations about natural history and producing a map of Chile that depicted the “Desert of Atacama” in considerable detail. In 1853-54,the German naturalist Rudolph A. Philippi explored the region and subsequently (1860) published the first scientific report on the “Wüste Atacama” (Atacama Desert), which included a map. Actually, about three years earlier (1856-57), German mapmaker August Petermann had already published a map of the Atacama Desert, and attributed the information on it to Philippi's expedition.  Petermann also published maps of Bolivia that included a section of this desert.  One of the most highly detailed maps of the region's mineral resources ever prepared  --Petermann's remarkable Karte der Salzwüste Atacama und des Grenzgebietsswischen Chile, Bolivia & Peru -- was published a year after his death (1879). Following the War of the Pacific (1879-1884), the Atacama Desert and its mineral riches now belonged entirely to Chile, and detailed mapping of the region was conducted by private and governmental expeditions aimed at further encouraging mining ventures. Noteworthy among these is Francisco J. San Román’s majestic Carta Jeográfica del Desiertoi Cordilleras de Atacama (1892), which represented state-of-the-art late 19th century mapping.  By then, the Atacama was well fixed in the popular imagination, the scientific world-view, and the minds of foreign investors.

To my knowledge, this will be the first SHD presentation to address the cartographic history of the Atacama Desert, and perhaps even the first covering this remote part of South America.  It builds upon maps and other cartographic devices discussed in my 2016 article in Terrae Incognitae, which covered a longer time period in less depth. It also presents maps in my personal collection, including those associated with Petermanns Geographische Mitteilungen.  One map mentioned in the abstract  -- Francisco J. San Román's 1892 Carta Jeográfica del Desiertoi Cordilleras de Atacama -- is discussed in considerable detail as it comprehensively depicts natural and cultural features following the War of the Pacific. With copies of these maps in hand, I have field-checked portions of them and offer insights on the challenges faced by mapmakers in the Atacama.  Secondary sources include journal articles and reports such as Toribio Medina’s encyclopedic Mapoteca Chilena. The presentation also acknowledges more recent scholarship, including Mélica Muñoz-Schick's "Viajes de Philippi a la Región de Atacama" (2008), the chapter by Karl Offen titled "Minerals and War" (in Mapping Latin America, Jordana Dym and Karl Offen, eds., 2011), as well as current work by cartographic historian José Antonio González Pizarro (Universidad Católica del Norte, Antofagasta, Chile) on the role of mining and railroad development in stimulating 19th and early 20th century mapping in this region.

Note on contributor: Geographer and historian Richard Francaviglia is Professor Emeritus and former Director of the Center for Greater Southwestern Studies and the History of Cartography at University of Texas at Arlington. During his academic career, he also served as President of the Society for the History of Discoveries (SHD) and the Association for Arid Lands Studies (AALS).  He is author of several books addressing cartographic history, including The Cast Iron Forest: A Natural and Cultural History of the North American Cross Timbers (2000), Mapping and Imagination in the Great Basin: A Cartographic History (2005), and The Mapmakers of New Zion: A Cartographic History of Mormonism (2015). He conducts independent research in Salem, Oregon, and is an Associated Scholar at Willamette University.  His book manuscript titled Imagining the Atacama Desert: A Five Hundred Year Journey of Discovery is currently in press and scheduled to be published shortly before this presentation is given at the 2018 SHD meeting.    

Albert Einstein and the Fringe Scholars: Immanuel Velikovsky and Charles H. Hapgood

Ronald Fritze
Athens State University
300 Beaty Street, Athens, AL 35611

Albert Einstein has a well-deserved reputation as the greatest scientist of the twentieth century.  He was also a true humanitarian and a scholar who kept his mind open to new ideas.  Many people approached Einstein for advice and support.  Some of them were people engaged in what seemed at the time was dubious scholarship and now is almost universally considered pseudo-science or pseudo-history. Velikovsky and Hapgood both fall into this category and both approached Einstein for support.  Velikovsky is best known as the author of Worlds in Collision while Hapgood is best known as the author of Maps of the Ancient Sea Kings, a classic of the pseudo-history of cartography.  This paper will examine Einstein’s relationship with these two men.  It is based on their correspondence which can be found in the Velikovsky archives and in the Einstein papers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. 

Note on contributor: Ronald Fritze is the author of New Worlds: The Great Voyages of Discovery, c.1400-1600.  Stroud, Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing/Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002; Invented Knowledge: False History, Fake Science, and Pseudo-Religions.  London: Reaktion Books, March 2009; Egyptomania: A History of Fascination, Fantasy, and Obsession.  London: Reaktion Books, 2016 and is currently working on Alternative Histories and Popular Culture: Myths, Distortions, and Fantasy.  Under contract with Reaktion Books for publication in 2020. 

Clarence King & His Friends: On Mountaineering in the American West

Matthew Green
614 E. Chamberlin Street
Dixon, IL 61021

Clarence King was a pioneer of nineteenth century American mountaineering. With an unrestrained imagination and irrepressible will, he boldly pushed into high alpine regions and wrote colorful narratives of his explorations. However, his is no simple story of pure self-reliance. Friendships are a vital part of King’s mountaineering. King’s bold mountain leadership was made possible through powerful relationships and with the support of intrepid friends. The friendships of a small collection of rugged mountaineers in the American West, and the web of ties linking them with the broader society, offer unique perspectives into nineteenth century American culture.

I conducted extensive primary source research to complete this master’s thesis paper at multiple archives, including the following:Federal Archives Consulted- National Archives, Washington, D.C.; Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.; United States Geological Survey, Office of Scientific Publications, Reston, VA.I also read and researched many of the works of Clarence King, particularly his book,Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada, originally published in 1872.

Note on contributor: On August 1, 2017, I left a thirteen-year military career after resigning my officer’s commission as a major in the United States Marine Corps. I saw and experienced enough in the military to give me a sense of how much historical questions can and do impact the present. My purpose in pursuing history doctoral studies is to engage with other students and professors in refining and advancing my understanding of history. My professional goal is to find work as a professor of western history in order to enable others in their pursuit of a similar purpose.

Master of Arts in History, George Washington University. Applied and offered admission to the history doctoral programs at the University of Utah and Montana State University, pending response from the University of Colorado, the University of California-Santa Barbara, and the University of California-Riverside

Mapping an Arctic Life:  Discovering Robert Abram Bartlett of the Canadian Arctic Expedition and Peary’s 1909 North Pole Expedition

Maura Hanrahan
Department of Indigenous Studies
4401 University Drive, University of Lethbridge
Lethbridge, Alberta, T1K 6T5

The word ‘discover’ implies the unexpected and newness, something that is not yet known and carries with it an element of surprise. Captain Robert Abram Bartlett (1875-1946) set out for the North Pole with Admiral Peary and later went in search of undiscovered realms in the Western Arctic, leading the Northern Party of the Canadian Arctic Expedition after Vilhjalmur Stefansson left the Karluk in 1913. Bartlett was one of many larger than life figures who felt drawn to what was considered meta incognito, the unknown land of the Arctic. He went beyond navigating to taking on the mantle of explorer and, while he was an innovator, he might also be seen as a throwback to Captain James Cook. But what do we really know of the explorers as people and, I ask, of Bartlett in particular?

This paper presents my work in discovering an explorer, Robert Abram Bartlett, and deconstructing his public image to understand his inner life. It is based on my book, Unchained Man: The Arctic Life and Times of Captain Robert Abram Bartlett, to be published early in the summer of 2018. Like most explorers, Bartlett collected awards, including the Hubbard Medal. Bartlett was wildly popular on the 1930s lecture circuit, and did numerous commercial endorsements, including for Coopers long johns and Remington guns. Bartlett’s writing and writing about Bartlett are rooted in the great man school of history. Yet Bartlett’s efforts were collective, involving Inuit like Claude Kataktovik, patrons like publisher George Putnam, and many others.

While Bartlett aimed to discover new Arctic islands and reach untrodden places, it is difficult – but not impossible – to discover him. As an individual, Bartlett wanted to remain undiscovered. As his biographer, I had to dig deep to find him and understand him. His public persona fits the mold of Arctic explorer and was easy to access and, for pragmatic reasons, he built and maintained it as he did. But Bartlett the man was an introvert who had few close friends, never married, and lived most of his adult life alone in a messy room in the Murray Hotel in New York. Although introversion does not necessarily correspond to loneliness, Bartlett experienced long bouts of loneliness. He was passionate about wildflowers and the poetry of Omar Khayyam. He felt at home only in the Arctic. Although, in 1927, the British journalist Sir Philip Gibbs wrote of him as an “unchained man,” Bartlett was hardly that, as I have discovered.

Note on contributor: Maura Hanrahan is Board of Governors Research Chair & Associate Professor in the Department of Indigenous Studies at the University of Lethbridge, Lethbridge, Alberta. She is also an adjunct professor with the Environmental Policy Institute, Memorial University, Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador. She has a PhD in Sea-Use Law, Economics and Policy from the London School of Economics and Political Science, where she was a Rothermere Fellow and an LSE Fellow. Like Bob Bartlett, the subject of her forthcoming book, Maura grew up in Newfoundland and Labrador. Her 12th book, Unchained Man: The Arctic Life and Times of Captain Robert Abram Bartlett, is forthcoming.

Transits, Timbers, and Tunnels: The Legacy of Colorado Inventor David W. Brunton

Ginny Kilander
American Heritage Center, University of Wyoming.
University Ave., Laramie, WY 82071

In September of 1894, a Canadian born inventor and mining engineer living in Aspen, CO, patented a device that would revolutionize geologic and mining fieldwork. Having grown tired of hauling multiple measuring devices into the field, David Brunton invented the vest-sized handheld surveying compass known as the “Brunton Pocket Transit” or more simply “the Brunton.”  Described as “the most convenient, compact and accurate instrument for preliminary surveying on the surface or underground,” the compass was in use from Australia to Alaska.  Brunton continued to improve the device, eventually holding six patents, and over 60,000 of the devices were manufactured in the first thirty years of production. The U.S. Geological Survey adopted use of the transit for geologic & topographic work, and numerous engineers, geologists, and mine managers assumed use of the invention, too.

Manufactured exclusively by Denver’s William Ainsworth & Sons Company beginning in 1896, this precision instrument firm also was the first Western U.S. manufacturer of surveying balances. Ainsworth & Sons ceased production of the transit in the 1960s when the company was purchased by a Texas firm. A Riverton, Wyoming company purchased the compass manufacturing rights and the Brunton name in 1972, and the Brunton Company is still in production today.

During World War I, David Brunton served multiple roles with the U.S. Naval Consulting Board, chaired by Thomas Edison, and the U.S military manufactured four of his inventions to support the war efforts. During World War II improvements were made to the existing inventions and again produced for military use.  Brunton is most well known for his Pocket Transit, but he also invented numerous other devices and held twenty patents, including those for mining pumps, ore roasters, ore-sampling machines, and mining timbers.  He also held patents for a circular slide-rule, car-coupling, and for improvements to the velocipede-car.

Brunton focused his professional life in Colorado with mine surveying, mine examinations, ore sampling, and tunnel work, supplemented with worldwide mining and engineering consulting work based out of his Denver office. His pioneering work as an engineer and supervisor of multiple Colorado tunnel projects resulted in the publication of a book and articles on his innovative techniques.

Brunton’s long-term impact in the geologic and mining fields has been particularly significant. U.S astronaut training for the Apollo moon missions used his Brunton transit, and today, one hundred and fifteen years after the original patent was granted, countless geologists and surveyors, archaeologists, students, and outdoor enthusiasts still use the device.

This talk will draw from research in primary sources related to David Brunton and William Ainsworth held by the Colorado School of Mines, Denver Public Library, Colorado Historical Society, and the University of Wyoming’s American Heritage Center. Brunton’s patents, publications and personal papers will be included in the study, with assorted secondary sources that discuss the impact of his contributions to multiple fields of research and development.  The article was published as a chapter in the 2011 book, Enterprise and Innovation in the Pikes Peak Region (Pikes Peak Regional History Series). Pikes Peak Library District with Dream City Vision 2020. Colorado Springs, CO, pp. 65-101. Editors:  Tim Blevins, Dennis Daily, Sydne Dean, Chris Nicholl, and Michael L. Olsen.

Note on contributor: Ginny Kilander is a faculty reference archivist at the American Heritage Center at the University of Wyoming. Currently the head of reference services, her work at the AHC also includes the acquisition of mining, petroleum and energy collections, and she serves as the manager of the Center’s 1.8 million Anaconda Copper Mining Company Records.  This topic was first inspired by her research in the Center’s own William Ainsworth papers.  She is a board member of the Mining History Association, and currently serves on the Mining Heritage Award Committee.

The Ways West

Chris Lane
The Philadelphia Print Shop West, Denver, CO

From the very beginning of European discovery, there was a strong desire to head west across the North American continent.  The first who came upon America were trying to get to Asia and the continent was just in the way.

The first settlers had no real concept of the nature of the American West and they retained their desire to head west, hoping for a short and easy passageway to China.  Even once the size of North America was understood, the notion that there should be a relatively easy means to cross the continent was ingrained in the minds and hopes of many.

The Trans-Mississippi West is a huge area, over 1.5 million square miles.  Its size and the difficult and anything but flat terrain, with all its mountains, canyons, and deserts, made it hard to gain even a basic understanding of its geography.  When this was combined with the complexity of its river systems and the lack of any kind of established roads, the question of how to find a Way West was paramount.

This talk will look at the gradual development of the different “Ways West,” as understood by those hoping to travel that way as reflected in contemporary printed maps. 

Note on contributor: Christopher W. Lane is owner of The Philadelphia Print Shop West in Denver, Colorado.  Chris has worked in the antique print and map business for over 35 years and has come to be recognized as one of the country’s experts in this field, as evidenced by his 21 year stint as print and map expert on PBS’s Antiques Roadshow.

Chris has curated a number of museum exhibitions, written several books, including the Ewell Newman Award winningPanorama of Pittsburgh, as well as numerous articles in books and magazines.  Chris has also lectured around the country and overseas on topics such as antique maps, Currier & Ives, and historical prints.  Since coming to Denver, Chris has made the history of western maps and views a particular focus, producing a number of articles on these topics and lecturing at the Denver Public Library and other local venues.

Crossing the Sierra Nevada Mountains into California:
from Jedediah Smith to the Interstate Highways

J. C. McElveen
121 Madison Place, Alexandria, Virginia 22314

Jedediah Smith is generally credited as being the first American to cross the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, in 1827.  When only a few fur trappers and settlers were crossing into Mexican California from the 1820s until the late 1840s, convenient and well-maintained passes were not critical.  However, when the Donner party disaster occurred in the winter of 1847, gold was discovered in California in early 1848, and California became a part of the United States later in 1848, the necessity of establishing reliable passes through the  Sierras became very important.  Routes to California, such as sailing around the tip of South America; sailing to Central America, crossing the mosquito-infested isthmus and taking another ship; or crossing the Mojave Desert all presented considerable difficulties.

This presentation will examine the evaluation of various routes across the Sierra Nevada Mountains, discuss their suitability for travelers on foot, with wagons, on rail and by car.  Certain ill-advised journeys, such as that of the Donner Party will be examined, as will the discovery of the Yosemite Valley and efforts to make it accessible.

The presentation will identify which of the multiple passes through the Sierra Nevada Mountains are suitable for what types of conveyance, and what modifications needed to be made, to make certain routes passable.  

Note on contributor: I practiced law for 40 years, and I retired in 2012.  I have volunteered at the Geography and Map Division of the Library of Congress, at the National Museum of the American Indian and at the Folger Shakespeare Library.  I am a member of the Society for the History of Discoveries, the International Map Collectors Society and the Washington Map Society.  Over the years, I have served the Washington Map Society as Vice-President and Program Chair, and as President. From late March through May of 2018, I will be curating an exhibit of my maps and books entitled ‘Westward the Course of Empire’: Exploring and Settling the American West 1803-1869”, at the Grolier Club of New York.  In conjunction with that exhibit, I have prepared a 155 pages catalogue.  I have also written and spoken on map-related topics, as set out below.

The Native American Explorer Moncacht-Apé:
His Round Trip Transcontinental Journey Across North America, Circa 1700

Donald McGuirk
1011 South Valentia Street Unit 32, Denver, CO. 80247

Moncacht-Apé was a member of the Yazoo Indian Nation living near Natchez, Mississippi. His journeys to both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts where recorded by Antoine-Simon Le Page du Pratz, a member of the Louisiana Colony from 1718 to 1734. On returning to Paris, du Pratz published Moncacht-Apé’s purported journeys in the work, Histoire de la Louisiane, 1758. Parts of these journeys were reiterated by Samuel Engel (1763) and Didier Robert de Vaugondy (1768). Other presentations of this work in English include: History of Louisiana (1763 and 1774, English translations of du Pratz’s work) and The Journey of Moncacht-Apé’, by Andrew McFarland Davis, 1883. Moncacht-Apé’s travels to the Pacific coast were documented on several maps, 1758 – 1792.  It is likely that the story of his travels impacted both Thomas Jefferson’s instructions to Meriwether Lewis and the route taken by the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

Note on contributor: Dr. Donald L. McGuirk Jr. is a retired physician with a keen interest in early world maps, cartographic myths, and early exploration of the New World. He is a founding member and former president of the Rocky Mountain Map Society. He has been a member of the Philip Lee Phillips Map Society since its inception, and now sits on its steering committee. McGuirk has also been a member of the Society for the History of Discoveries for over thirty years. Additionally, he is a member, in long standing, of the Washington Map Society and the Texas Map Society. A summary of his cartographic publications can be found at: https://independent.academia.edu/DonMcGuirk

Recovery of Ancient Identity through Literature in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains

Ann M. Ortiz and Tiago Jones
Campbell University
Buies Creek, NC 27506

The Sangre de Cristo Mountains are the southernmost mountain range of the Rockies.They sprawl over 200 miles of snow-capped peaks from Santa Fe, to Salida, Colorado just southwest of Colorado Springs. Their natural divisions fall between the Blanco region in the South, the Middle cluster, and the Northern areas which cross the border between New Mexico and Colorado.Stories and legends have been somewhat preserved, although always changing, through oral traditions since ancient times.Such stories have moved in part toward journalistic and literary venues beginning with the mid 1800s expansion of US printing presses.

Newspapers such asthe Rocky Mountain Newsand theCherry Creek Pioneer,the first two published in Denverin 1859, and the Wet Mountain Tribunein 1912, often printed Spanish and Native American legends centering around the regions of the Sangre de Cristo and the San Luis Valley.Narratives of modern life in areas known and spoken of in ancient epochs are thrust into a superficial and contradictory cultural setting of the 20thand 21st centuries.In such writing there is evidence of a recovery in parts of ancient knowledge.The telluric literature of the Great American Southwest reveals a mosaic of such old yet new discoveries.

Note on contributors:
Dr. Ann Ortiz is a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with her PhD in Spanish American Literature.  Her earlier graduate degree was an MA in Latin American Studies at the University of Arizona in Tucson.  Her undergraduate degree was from East Carolina University School of Music where she received her BA degree with a specialization in Music Therapy and minors in Psychology and Latin American Studies. Ann directed the Honors Program at Campbell University from 1998-2018 and is currently working in curriculum development for the new Biomedical Humanities program there.  She also leads students on yearly trips to Tucson, Arizona for Medical Interpreter training at the National Center for Interpretation at the University of Arizona.  Recent projects include a book on the Naufragiosof Cabeza de Vaca and an upcoming course in the Literature of the Southwest that includes a student and faculty trip to Santa Fe. 

Dr. Tiago Jones is Currently Associate Professor of Romance Languages and Chair of the Foreign Language Department at Campbell University, Buies Creek North Carolina. He is the academic adviser for the Campbell Hispanic Association (CHA) and also for the Catholic Student Association (CSA).He taught Portuguese at the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras 1999-2003. He obtained his Doctorate in Romance Languages from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.He has interviewed, presented conferences, and published a review on Nobel Prize winning author José Saramago.He has published articles in the MIFLIC Review, The Romance Language Annual and Hispania, as well other reviews, and journals. Most recently, he has completed translations of Lauro López Beltrán’s “La persecuciónreligiosaen México” and María Helena Azevedo’s “A Hora Branca.”He was president of The Association of Academic Programs in Latin America and the Caribbean (AAPLAC) 2016-2018.

Colorado Territorial Gold Coinage in the Pikes Peak Gold Rush

Ed Raines, Collections Manager
Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum
1310 Maple, Golden Co 80401

The Frederick Mayer Collection of Colorado Territorial Gold Coins has recently been loaned to the CSM Geology Museum. These coins are without question the most important artifacts extant that are directly linked to the Pikes Peak Gold Rush. And even more important to the world of mineralogists and geologists, they are the only metallurgical remnants with a legitimate provenance that is tied to the frontier mines.

The origins of the Colorado Gold Rush were born in the hard times of the Panic of 1857, and most 59ers came west with empty pockets. As Elliot West put it in “The Contested Plains” the average 59er didn’t have to think his way through a long series of pros and cons for a westward journey, i.e. “it wasn’t why should I go to Pikes Peak, it was why not?” But, those 59ers who found gold, still didn’t have any money with which to buy food, supplies, or a night on the town.Into this vacuum stepped Clark, Gruber & Co. of Leavenworth, Kansas. The bankers (brothers Milton and Austin Clark in partnership with Emanuel Gruber) examined the circumstances of a frontier gold mining region located some 1700 miles from the mint where gold could be converted to cash and developed a business plan that called for the establishment of a private mint in Denver to coin the gold being mined.

The men acted out their plan most efficiently and were turning out $20, $10, $5, and $2.50 gold pieces within seven months from their decision to proceed with the plan. The business was an instant success as the coinage fulfilled a vital economic function to the development of the region.Other men also coined gold on a small scale in the Gold Rush days, and the Mayer Collection contains important examples of these coins. The coins of John Parsons who operated for a short time at Tarryall are featured in the collection. Also represented are the coins of J.J. Conway who operated a mint in Georgia Gulch (a tributary of the Swan River in Summit County) during the summer of 1861.

Note on contributor: Ed is a geologist, mineralogist, and mining historian.  At present he serves as Collections Manager for the Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum. He has served as the president of the Mining History Association. He has written numerous papers on the geology, mineralogy, and mining history of many Colorado mining districts, several of which have received special awards from Friends of Mineralogy.  In 2009, his book Historic Photos of Colorado Mining was published by Turner Publishing. He also gives slide lecture programs on many aspects of both geology and mining history.

From 1995 to 2004 he served as the mining representative on the Boulder County Commissioner's Historical Preservation Advisory Board.  He is a past president the Colorado Chapter of Friends of Mineralogy. Ed has taught adult, continuing education courses (Geology of the Front Range and Rock and Mineral Identification) through the Boulder Valley School District for more than twenty years.  He has led geology and mining history field trips to Leadville, Creede, Cripple Creek, Central City, Georgetown- Silver Plume, Gold Hill, Caribou, Nederland, Jamestown, the eastern San Juan Volcanic Field, the Front Range Foothills, Rocky Mountain National Park, and Clear Creek Canyon.  He has organized and managed annual conferences for the Mining History Association at Gold Hill, Leadville, and Creede.In 1997 he received the Clear Creek County Metal Mining Association's Golden Burro Award for his work in promoting the mining industry through his writing and lecture programs. In 2000 he received a special State Honor Award from Colorado Preservation Inc. for his work in historical preservation at Leadville.

The Mountains of the Moon: Mapping the Mythical Mountains

Vincent Szilagyi
Cable Center, Denver, Co

Since the beginning of recorded time, the source of the World's greatest river, the Nile, was shrouded in mystery. Legends sprung up that the Nile began at the feet of theMountains of the Moon, amountain range so high it scraped the Moon, and so far away it could never be reached.The Mountains of the Moon captured the world's imagination for millennia, with each failed expedition sent by the Greeks, Romans, Persians and Arabs adding to the mystery.Ptolmey placed the Mountains of the Moon deep in the African interior with the Nile springing from two massive lakes nearby. This depiction, with a few minor changes, would remain on maps for millennia.

It was not until the 1800s that explorers finally reached the headwaters of the Nile, and the story of what they found and how they got there is as intriguing and engaging a story as any in the history of exploration.Arab Slave Traders, and later British and American explorers charted the Great Lakes region of Africa and the headwaters of the Nile. The mapping of the area resulted in a frenzied colonial scramble with Britain, Germany, France, Egypt and Belgium parceling out territory and extracting valuable resources like ivory and rubber. The historicity of the Mountains of the Moon remains up for debate with some scholars affixing their name to various existing mountains like Kilimanjaro and the Ruwenzori, while others treat them as pure fantasy.

Note on contributor: Mr. Szilagyi is a Board Member of the Rocky Mountain Map Society. He graduated from the University of Denver in 2013 with Degrees in History, Political Science and Geography. His senior thesis concerned the mapping of Central Africa and the Nile River in the 1850s to 1870s and the impacts this had on the nascent academic disciplines of Geography and Geology. After graduating, Vincent indulged his passion for maps by working at the Philadelphia Print Shop West in Cherry Creek, one of the Nation's premier antique map and print galleries. He now works as an Research Archivist at the Cable Center in Denver, Colorado.

The Voyage of 1521: New Insight into Henry VIII’s Planned Voyage to America

Lydia Towns
University of Texas at Arlington

The voyage of 1521 has been discussed by experts of English exploration for generations.  While some point to this voyage as evidence of Henry VIII’s limited interest in exploration, these historians state that Henry’s seemingly unchallenged acceptance of the Worshipful Drapers’ refusal to support the voyage proves that Henry really was not all that interested in New World exploration.   Some historians have pointed to the request sent to the Drapers, which was written by Cardinal Wolsey, to argue that Henry VIII was not interested in the New World, it was Cardinal Wolsey who was farsighted enough to be interested in exploration.  These historians argue that since it appears that Henry VIII did not challenge the Drapers’ refusal to support the voyage it is proof that he had not orchestrated the request, that it came rather from Cardinal Wolsey.  Nearly all historians who have discussed this planned voyage point to the Drapers’ response and argue that it proves that there was no interest in London, particularly among London merchants, in New World exploration.  However, a careful and full reading of the exchange which took place between the Worshipful Company of Drapers and both Cardinal Wolsey and the King, an exchange which was dragged out over roughly five weeks, reveals that this was not simply a onetime request that was quickly dismissed when it did not receive a favorable answer.  Using the minutes books from the Worshipful Company of Drapers, held at Drapers’ Hall Library, I will demonstrate that a full and careful reading of this exchange proves that Henry VIII was interested in New World exploration, that he helped organize the planned voyage and that he did not willingly take no for an answer.  I will also use the records of the Merchant Adventurers to demonstrate that there were merchants in London in 1521 who were interested in this voyage and were willing to participate in it.

This is new research that I am doing as part of my dissertation.  My arguments have not been published.

Note on contributor: Lydia Towns is a doctoral candidate at the University of Texas at Arlington in their Transatlantic History Program.  Her dissertation looks at English activity in, and discussions of, the Atlantic World during the first half of the sixteenth century.  She has presented multiple papers on this topic on both sides of the Atlantic.  Lydia Towns served as the President for the Transatlantic History Student Organization for two terms and currently serves as Secretary for the Society for the History of Discovery.

The Maps Used by Explorers in the Late Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries

Chet Van Duzer
David Rumsey Research Fellow
John Carter Brown Library, Brown University
Providence, RI  02912

The question of using maps to guide a journey of discovery is inherently interesting: the maps can presumably guide the explorer reliably to a certain point, but if the goal is to discover new territory, to expand knowledge, then at some point the explorer will travel beyond what is reliably depicted on the map. In this talk I will examine what we know about the maps used by some explorers in the early stages of the European expansion. Christopher Columbus was influenced by the Yale Martellus map and owned a copy of the 1478 edition of Ptolemy’s Geography; Amerigo Vespucci’s uncle Giorgio Antonio made a manuscript of Ptolemy’s Geography that Amerigo was no doubt familiar with; we have good information about the maps that Magellan took with him on his voyage around the world; and data is available about the maps that other early explorers used. Examining the maps that were used by explorers allows us to get at the interplay between expectation and reality, between hope and experience, which is such an essential part of any voyage of discovery.

The talk will be abundantly illustrated with the relevant maps wherever possible. The paper is new research based as far as possible on primary sources.

Note on contributor:
Chet Van Duzer is the David Rumsey Research Fellow at Stanford and the John Carter Brown Library and a board member of the Lazarus Project at the University of Rochester, which brings multispectral imaging to cultural institutions around the world. He has published extensively on medieval and Renaissance maps. He is the author of Johann Schöner’s Globe of 1515: Transcription and Study, the first detailed analysis of one of the earliest surviving terrestrial globes that includes the New World; and (with John Hessler) Seeing the World Anew: The Radical Vision of Martin Waldseemüller’s 1507 & 1516 World Maps. His book Sea Monsters on Medieval and Renaissance Maps was published in 2013 by the British Library, and is now available in German and Russian editions, with a Chinese edition on the way. His book The World for a King: Pierre Desceliers’ Map of 1550 was published at the end of 2015 by the British Library, and in 2016 Brill published a book he co-authored with Ilya Dines, Apocalyptic Cartography: Thematic Maps and the End of the World in a Fifteenth-Century Manuscript. His recent NEH-Mellon project at the Library of Congress was a study of the annotations in a heavily annotated copy of the 1525 edition of Ptolemy’s Geography.

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