American Indian Studies – Ayer Collection – Development of Cartography of the Western Hemisphere

Fitzgerald Map 2F G3290 1570.07
Abraham Ortelius. Map of the Americas. c.1580. Fitzgerald Map 2F G3290 1570.07

The Ayer Collection includes about 2,000 separately printed maps, 500 atlases, and 300 manuscript maps that document the development of geography and cartography of the Western Hemisphere. Prominent among these holdings are the famous Ayer-Stevens Ptolemy Collection, a large collection of portolan atlases and charts, and nearly 800 photographs of manuscript maps relating to America collected by Professor Louis Karpinski in 1926 from French, Spanish, and Portuguese archives.