WMS Meetings Info

Member and non-member information

Non-members always welcome!




Unless otherwise stated, program sessions being at 1700 hours (5:00 PM) and are held in the Geography and Map Division Research Center, B level, Library of Congress, Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C. Please allow adequate time to pass through security. The Library is one block from METRO's Capital South Station (Blue, Orange  or Silver Lines).  Due to ongoing construction, one should ensure their line is running on schedule.

Each presentation held at the Library of Congress will be augmented by special display of rare maps and atlases from the Geography and Map Division collection.  The maps can be viewed prior to and after the presentation.

Eliane Dotson (Eliane@oldworldauctions.com) is President and Bert Johnson (mandraki@verizon.net) is VP and Programs chair.  Eliane and Bert welcome suggestions for future programs and speakers.

Weather:  The WMS follows the closing decisions of the Federal Government. If the Federal Government is closed, our meeting will be canceled. In the event bad weather develops later in the day, we may still be forced to cancel. We will attempt to send out a blast e-mail in that case. Please check your email account for a WMS notice before coming to a meeting when bad weather is predicted. 

21 March 2019          The History of Cartography Project: Its Past, Future, and Lasting Importance

Speaker: Dr. Matthew Edney,

University of Southern Maine; Osher Chair in the History of Cartography; Osher Map Library;

Director, History of Cartography Project

In 1977, David Woodward and J. B. Harley conceived of The History of Cartography to encourage connoisseurs of maps, devotees of map history, and specialists dedicated to identifying and describing early maps to also consider how and why people have made and used maps - from mere documents to cultural artifacts. The effort exploded beyond their wildest expectations, expanding from a four-book series to six broadly inclusive and increasingly large volumes, some with multiple books. It also fostered an unprecedented sense of community among map scholars around the world.

11 April 2019             In the Footsteps of the Crime       

Speaker:  Dr. Ronald Grim formerly Curator of Maps, Leventhal Map Center, Boston Public Library

In 2005, Dr. Ron Grim became the Curator of Map at the Leventhal Map Center of the Boston Public Library. A few months later, map thief E. Forbes Smiley was arrested. Because Smiley was a frequent visitor to the BPL (or Boston Public Library), Ron initiated a massive cataloging and digitizing program.  They identified about 70 maps Smiley had examined which were missing.  Diligent efforts led to the recovery of about half of them, but some treasures appeared lost for good. A decade later, however, the BPL was able to recover a missing masterpiece by Samuel de Champlain (Carte Geographique de Nouvelle France) after Dr. Grim spotted it in the catalog of a prominent dealer (asking price $285,000). Dr. Grim will discuss the theft, the security and inventory measures that resulted, and the recovery of the Champlain map.

May 17, 2019                   Annual Dinner Click HERE for full information.

Annual Washington Map Society Dinner
Speaker: J. C. McElveen (WMS), Exhibit Curator for Westward the Course of Empire: Exploring and Settling the American West 1803-1869, an exhibition of maps and books from the collection of J. C. McElveen, Jr., on view at New York City's Grolier Club during May 2018.
Venue: Maggiano's at Tysons
Further details to be announced