Maps in DC Area

Compiled by WMS John Docktor:

Where to See Antique Maps in Washington, DC Area
(and around the world).  Please click HERE for events and exhbits beyond DC.

The Washington Map Society receives numerous inquiries as to where visitors can go to see maps when they are visiting Washington. Of course there are always the short exhibitions, and we will try to post them onto this page as they occur. On a more permanent basis, the following locations contain some of the antique map treasures in the Washington DC area:

The Geography and Map (G&M) Division Reading Room, Library of Congress. 101 Independence Avenue SE, Washington, DC. They can pull any maps you ask to see. They have over four million. There is no exhibit of maps, but come ready to ask for your favorites, or ready to do some serious research. Open 8:30am until 5pm Monday through Friday.

Exploring the Early Americas is an exhibition featuring the 1507 Waldseemüller "World Map," the first map to use the name America; and rotating items from the Jay I. Kislak Collection, which includes rare books, manuscripts, historic documents, maps and art of the Americas. Also on display is Waldseemüller's "Carta Marina" or Navigators' Chart; and the Schöner Sammelbund, a portfolio that contained two world maps and other cartographic materials. The exhibition is in the Northwest Gallery of the Jefferson Building, Library of Congress. The exhibit is free and open to the public, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

The Kiplinger Research Library of the Historical Society of Washington has a large collection of maps of the city, including an extensive collection of real estate atlases that patrons can browse. 801 K Street NW at Mount Vernon Square, Washington, DC. Open 10:00am until 5:00pm Tuesday through Saturday. Telephone 202.383.1800.

The Society of the Cincinnati has more than 300 18th-century maps, battle plans and atlases in its collections. The Society of the Cincinnati Library is located in the Harold Leonard Stuart Gallery on the lower floor of the Society's headquarters, Anderson House, 2118 Massachusetts Avenue NW. The library is open for research on weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Readers are required to register and show photo identification in order to access the collection. For appointments and further information about the library, please call (202) 785-2040, extension 411.

Map Exhibitions and Map Meetings around the world: As you travel, first visit - it is a great source of information concerning coming cartographic events and also ongoing map exhibitions worldwide. It is maintained by one of our members.