14 Dec 2011

Finding Antarctica: Mapping the Last Continent Exhibition

‘In 2011 Australia celebrates 100 years of Australian expeditions to the Antarctic. The Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE), which departed from Hobart in December 1911 and was led by Sir Douglas Mawson, was the first Australian-led Antarctic expedition.’

To celebrate this centenary the State Library of New South Wales has an exhibition ‘Finding Antarctica: Mapping the Last Continent.’  The exhibition focuses on the mapping of Antarctica from the 15th to the 21st century and the story of the discovery, exploration and charting of this frozen South Polar Continent.

The maps displayed include the Antarctic Regions: Maps showing present state of research 1898 where the name Antarctica is shown clearly across the southern continent.  This map was produced for the Royal Geographical Society by our predecessor J. G. Bartholomew F.R.S.E at The Edinburgh Geographical Institute, for John Bartholomew & Co.  It is one of the first maps to show the name Antarctica, the first use of this name on maps is attributed to the cartographer John George Bartholomew.

The Naming of Antarctica
Highlights from the Bartholomew Archive The naming of Antarctica
National Library of Scotland, Scottish Maps Forum Cairt July 2008 extract

The exhibition runs from 3 Dec 2011 – 19 Feb 2012 in Sydney.  If you can’t make it in person then explore the maps and information via the library’s website.

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