After an eight year voyage to maritime, art and history museums around the country, Mapping the Pacific Coast is finally retiring at the Columbia River Maritime Museum, a gift of Henry and Holly Wendt to the Museum. Marking this auspicious occasion, the Wendt’s second map collection Envisioning The World will concurrently be displayed from February 12 through September 15 2012 at the Museum. This will be the only exhibition featuring both collections on display.
The Maritime Museum of San Diego enjoys a worldwide reputation for excellence in restoring, maintaining and operating historic vessels. The museum has one of the world’s finest collections of historic ships, and displays permanent and temporary exhibits on maritime history. ”Mapping the Pacific Coast” is currently on display in the Gould Gallery aboard the Berkeley- an 1898 steam ferryboat that operated for 60 years on the San Francisco Bay. Any plans to visit San Diego?
Reporter Meg McConahey: “Quivira was a mythical kingdom in the faraway Americas, a wealthy civilization whose enlightened people, it was said, dined off golden dishes and traded with Cathay… It would take a 20th-century pharmaceutical executive, long captivated by the detailed histories contained within the fragile parchment of ancient maps, to finally make Quivira a real place.”
Reporter Leslie Harlib: “Early maps were as much about fantasy as they were practical tools for navigation. They are, to be sure, stunningly illustrated charts of land masses and sea currents, as accurate as the hand-held compasses and astrolabes of the time could make them. But they also portray sea monsters, galleons under full sail, native peoples, exotic flora and fauna, even the heads of gods to blow fair winds to speed navigators on their way.”
A wonderful interview by Jesse Hamlin with Mapping the Pacific Coast exhibition owner Henry Wendt, in which sea monsters, a unicorn with a fish tail, and a scary beast with a bird head, reptilian body and whale’s tail are discussed!
Welcome to our new website for Mapping the Pacific Coast: Coronado to Lewis and Clark! We have redesigned the website to provide a more interactive experience for exploring the maps in this collection. All of the latest news and events about the collection and the exhibition will be updated regularly here.
Also, be sure to visit our sister site, Envisioning the World: The First Printed Maps 1472-1700, part of the Wendt Collection.