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The map that changed the world

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Author Topic: The map that changed the world  (Read 635 times)
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« on: October 29, 2009, 02:44:19 am »

In the summer of 1901, while doing research in the library of Wolfegg Castle, in southern Germany, a Jesuit geography teacher named Joseph Fischer stumbled across the Schoner folio and quickly realized what he had found.

Within months his discovery was international news. "LONG SOUGHT MAP DISCOVERED," a New York Times headline announced in March of 1902. "EARLIEST KNOWN RECORD OF THE WORD AMERICA FINALLY BROUGHT TO LIGHT."

The map remained in the Wolfegg collection for the next hundred years - until 2003, when the US Library of Congress announced, with great fanfare, that it had acquired the map from the castle's owner for the staggering sum of $10m.

It was the highest price the library had ever paid for anything in its vast collection. Proudly, in its press release the library referred to the map as America's "birth certificate".
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