Monday, September 26, 2016

Mapping History Class at the Cornerstone Center for the Arts




Dear Diary: Mapping U.S. History Using Local Diaries

The Ball State University Libraries’ Digital Media Repository (DMR) provides online access to a range of digitized primary sources, including films, artwork, maps, and photographs.  But also included in the DMR is a collection of unique local diaries dating back to the 1800’s.  So the Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) used excerpts from some of the diaries to research different eras of American history in coordination with maps related to historical events.

The GRMC will be provide a presentation of this unique look at history tomorrow, September 27 from 6:00 to 7:00 pm at the Cornerstone Center for the Arts in downtown Muncie.  The class, Dear Muncie: Mapping History Using Diaries, will use the diaries of city founder Thomas Neely, Muncie single working woman, Norene Hawk, and Muncie teenager Thomas Ryan to reveal some of the important events and places in the city at the turn of the 20th century. 

The diaries describe how national and world events affected the people of Muncie.  And coordinating maps track where Norene and the “Thomases” traveled in Muncie.  Other local diaries will show how people across Indiana reacted to world events through the end of World War II.


The class is free and open to the public.  The Cornerstone Center for the Arts is located at 520 East Main Street, and free parking is available.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Gas Pipeline Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries


Maps in the News:  Gasoline Pipelines in the United States

A crucial gasoline pipeline closed on September 9 after the discovery of a spill of over 250,000 gallons in rural Alabama.  The Colonial Pipeline runs from Houston and supplies gasoline to New York and the east coast.  The leak will disrupt supplies and possibly drive up prices of fuel.

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) includes a collection of maps identifying the major gasoline and oil pipelines in the United States.  The Collection is available in the GRMC or in digital format from the Digital Media Repository (DMR).

United States Commodities Maps Collection includes a set of maps published by the U.S. Army Engineer Institute for Water Resources.  The Collection includes maps depicting various commodity movement routes, including iron, steel, crude oil, and grain.  The Continental Pipeline and other gasoline pipelines are depicted in black on this map.  Users can download the maps for research and learning.


For more information about using maps and other cartographic resources, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

Friday, September 09, 2016

September 11 Commemorated


Aerial View of Lower Manhattan, 1986
Ball State University Libraries
GIS Research and Map Collection
Aerial Photographer: Alex S. MacLean
Art: David A. Fox Studios, Narberth, Pennsylvania

Online Interactive Map of World Migration




World Migration on One Map

Cartographer Max Galka has created an interactive map that shows world migration by origin and destination country between 2010 and 2015.  The map is available via the Web page, Metrocosm

On the map, blue circles depict net migration coming in to a country; red circles represent more outflows.  Users can hover over a circle to see a country’s net migration.  Click on the circle to view the migration traffic of one country (click to enlarge map above, migration from Syria).

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Laos Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries









Places in the News:  Laos

President Obama became the first U.S. President to visit the country of Laos yesterday.  President Obama is attending a series of Asian summit meetings.  Speaking in Vientiane, the capital of Laos, Obama pledged to spend $90 million over the next three years to clear unexploded bombs dropped on the country during the Vietnam War.

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) on the second floor of Bracken Library has a large collection of maps of Laos and Asia.  The Collection includes tourist maps, topographic maps, physical maps, and maps showing economic factors and ethnic groups.  Historic and modern maps of Vientiane, Pakse, Savannakhet, and other cities in Laos are also available in the Collection.  The map of Vientiane (top map above, click to enlarge) was published in 1958 and shows significant buildings in the capital city. The maps are published in English, French, Lao, and Thai.  (The map above of Laos was published in Lao in 1963).

The GRMC also includes a collection of updated country maps that may be used for presentations and displays (digital or printed on-demand using the GRMC plotters).  These maps include a clear, easy-to-read map of the country with the largest cities and other geographic features depicted along with neighboring countries.

The last map is from State of the World Atlas by Dan Smith, published in 2006.  The map identifies in red countries experiencing casualties from landmines and/or explosive remnants of war.  In 2006, 1,367 people were reported killed by these explosives worldwide.

Maps from the GRMC may be circulated for two weeks or longer.  Contact the GRMC for more information about these cartographic resources or to use maps for displays, research, and learning.  The GRMC is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 to 5:00 and may be reached at 765-285-1097.

Online Resources for Studying Earthquakes



Shaky Ground:  Mapping Oklahoma Earthquakes

A magnitude 5.6 earthquake struck on Saturday morning near Pawnee, Oklahoma, northeast of Oklahoma City.  The earthquake matches the largest in the region in recent history.

Oklahoma has just recently become a seismically active state.  Most believe the increased activity is due to the expanded use of deep injection wells to dispose of wastewater and fracking (hydraulic fracturing) to extract oil and gas.

The U.S. Geological Survey tracks seismic activity in Oklahoma and around the world.  Users can read an earthquake history of Oklahoma, review earthquake and fault line maps, view animations of the seismic activity, and check news releases.

Earthquake Track provides data and mapping of recent earthquakes.  According to the site, Oklahoma has had 42 earthquakes in the last week; 121 earthquakes in the last month; and 2,501 earthquakes in the last year.

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) has a collection of maps depicting historic seismic activity around the world available from the Libraries’ Digital Media Repository (DMR).  The Earthquake and Seismic Hazard Maps Collection include world, United States, and regional maps of historic seismic hazards and activity.


For more information, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Online Guide of News Maps


Online Cartographic Resources for What’s in the News

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) provides cartographic resources for research and learning.  This Blog serves to provide users with useful maps from the Collection or other online news resources.  The GRMC created this online guide for finding useful maps that depict news events.  These sites can be a valuable resource for journalism or English students searching for maps to use as visual aids.

For more information about using maps in research and learning, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

Friday, August 26, 2016

March on Washington Anniversary Commemorative Map from Ball State University Libraries



The Life of Dr. King on a Map

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) has created a map identifying important locations in the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  The map serves to commemorate the anniversary of the March on Washington on Sunday, August 28.

The map (above, click to enlarge) is based on the book MLK: Journey of a King by Tonya Bolden.  Locations mentioned in the book are depicted on the map.  A timeline of events is featured below the map.

The map is available for research and learning from the GRMC or in digital format from the Libraries’ Cardinal Scholar repository.


For more information, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

National Park Service Celebrates 100 Years



Happy Birthday! National Park Service Centennial Celebration

Today marks the official celebration for the 100th birthday of the National Park Service.  ESRI, the world’s leading publisher of GIS mapping software, has created a Story Map to mark the occasion.

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) consolidates one-on-one research assistance from the GIS Specialist with the GIS Research Area, which offers access to ESRI GIS software, online tutorials, datasets, online mapping applications, and in-house GIS data.  GIS software is also available on computers throughout Bracken Library, the Architecture Library, and in the Science-Health Science Library.

The GRMC also includes hundreds of historic and modern maps of individual parks in the National Park Service.  The Collection includes a map of the Grand Canyon National Park published in 1927, a map of Acadia National Park from 1931, and a guide map of Yosemite National Park published in 1931.  A unique map of Yellowstone National Park available in the GRMC was published by the U.S. Department of Interior in 1941.


For more information, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097 Monday through Friday from 8:00 to 5:00 p.m.

Earthquake Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries




Earthquake and Seismic Activity Maps Available from Ball State University

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) has a collection of maps depicting historic seismic activity around the world available from the Libraries’ Digital Media Repository (DMR).  The Earthquake and Seismic Hazard Maps Collection include world, United States, and regional maps of historic seismic hazards and activity.  The Collection features maps produced by U.S. government agencies showing earthquakes, active volcanoes, fault line locations, and plate tectonics in the U.S. and around the world.

The map above (click to enlarge), This Dynamic Planet: World Map of Volcanoes, Earthquakes, Impact Craters, and Plate Tectonics, was published by the U.S. Geological Survey in 1994.  The second image is zoomed in to the area of the Amitrice in central Italy, site of a 6.2 magnitude earthquake this week.  

The map shows numerous incidents of seismic activity in Italy.  Italy has a long history of earthquakes and volcanoes.  In 1908, more than 82,000 people were killed in a 7.2 magnitude earthquake on Sicily.  And over 32,000 people were killed in a 7.0 earthquake near Avezzano in central Italy in 1915.

The GRMC has also created a social studies lesson to coordinate with maps in the DMR Collection available on the main DMR Collection page or from Cardinal Scholar.  The lesson may be used by teachers as an enhancement exercise for teaching about earthquakes, volcanoes, and plate tectonics.

Maps from the DMR may be downloaded for use in research and learning.  To order an archival file or to inquire about permissions for use, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097 or the Archives and Special Collections at 765-285-5078.

Original maps from the Collection are available for circulation from the GRMC on the second floor of Bracken Library.  Maps from the GRMC may be borrowed for two weeks or longer.