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Henry's Map Activities

Tuesday, April 22, 10:30 am-12:30 pm

Norman B. Leventhal Map Center

10:30: Story time: Henry’s Map

After reading Henry’s Map, create your own map of your house, neighborhood or the library. Play map games, complete a puzzle or color in your own globe.

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City of Neighborhoods Activities

Thursday, April 24, 10:30 am-12:30 pm

Norman B. Leventhal Map Center

Discover fun facts about Boston neighborhoods and cultures at the Map Center’s new exhibition. Then create your own Boston postcard or travel brochure to convince friends to come visit. Games and puzzles too!

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A City of Neighborhoods: The Changing Face of Boston

March 22 - August 23, 2014

Central Library, Norman B. Leventhal Map Center

What makes "new" Boston different from "old" Boston? Explore Boston's ethnic diversity and neighborhoods with a special exhibition featuring maps of Boston's immigrant population based on the 2010 Census using historic, modern and digitized maps.

This program is funded in part by Mass Humanities.

Mass Humanities “A Commonwealth of Ideas

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Lecture: You are Here - Hiawatha Bray

Thursday, May 8, 2014
Norman B. Leventhal Map Center, Central Library

You Are Here: From the Compass to GPS the history and future of How We find Ourselves - Hiawatha Bray (Boston Globe)

What does it mean to never get lost? Mr. Bray will examine the rise of our era of navigational omniscience — or how we came to know exactly where we are at all times. In a sweeping history of the development of location technology, Bray shows how radio signals created to carry telegraph messages were transformed into invisible beacons to guide ships and how rapidly spinning wheels steered submarines beneath the polar icecap. But while most of these technologies were developed for and by the military, they are now ubiquitous in our everyday lives. Our phones are now smart enough to pinpoint our presence to within a few feet—and nosy enough to share that information with government and corporations. This is the story of how humankind solved one of its oldest problems—only to herald a new era in which it’s impossible to hide.

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Lecture: The True Geography of Our Country - Joel Kovarsky

Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Central Library, Norman B. Leventhal Map Center

The True Geography of Our Country: Jefferson’s Cartographic Vision - Joel Kovarsky (The Prime Meridian: Antique Maps and Books)

A philosopher, architect, astronomer, and polymath, Thomas Jefferson lived at a time when geography was considered the “mother of all sciences.” Although he only published a single printed map, Jefferson was also regarded as a geographer, due to his interest in and use of geographic and cartographic materials during his many careers—attorney and regional and national politician—and in his twilight years at Monticello. For roughly twenty-five years he was involved with almost all elements of the urban planning of Washington, D.C., and his surveying skills were reflected in his architectural drawings, including of the iconic grounds of the University of Virginia. He understood maps not only as valuable for planning but as essential for future land claims and development, exploration and navigation, and continental commercial enterprise.

The True Geography of Our Country: Jefferson’s Cartographic Vision charts the importance of geography and maps as foundations of Jefferson’s lifelong pursuits. Although the world had already seen the Age of Exploration and the great sea voyages of Captain James Cook, Jefferson lived in a time when geography was of primary importance, prefiguring the rapid specializations of the mid- to late-nineteenth-century world. In his exploration of Jefferson’s passion for geography, including how our third President was a key participant in planning the route followed and regions explored by Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery, as well as other expeditions into the vast expanse of the Louisiana Purchase. Kovarsky reveals how geographical knowledge was essential to the manifold interests of the Sage of Monticello.

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We are One: Mapping the Road to American Independence

May - October 2015 – Central Library, McKim Exhibition Hall

2016 and 2017 – tour to London and U.S. city

In the spring of 2015 the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center will present an exhibition that commemorates the 250th anniversary of Britain’s 1765 Stamp Act. This pivotal moment sparked American opposition to Britain’s restrictive colonial policies, particularly taxation without representation, which was established to help pay for troops stationed in the colonies during the French and Indian War (1756-1763). Protestors in Boston hung one of the tax collectors in effigy on an elm tree near the Boston Common. The tree became known as the Liberty Tree, and the loose organization of protestors were known as the Sons of Liberty. This early opposition throughout the colonies to British imperial control set the stage for growing opposition to British rule during the next ten years, resulting in the American Revolutionary War.

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Historical Maps of Boston at the Langham Hotel

Historical Maps of Boston at the Langham Hotel


A selection of historical maps of New England, Massachusetts, and Boston, describing the topographical transformation of the city over 300 years from the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library are on display at this hotel.

Langham Hotel
250 Franklin Street
Boston, MA

Maps of the New England Coast at the Boston Harbor Hotel

Maps of the New England Coast at the Boston Harbor Hotel

Boston Harbor HotelMaps from the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library depicting the exploration, mapping, and maritime activity along the coastline of New England are on exhibit at this hotel.

Boston Harbor Hotel
70 Atlantic Avenue
Boston, MA

Norman B. Leventhal Map Center (