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Historic maps on display, for sale at Map Fair

Map buffs can add to their collections at the 19th annual Miami International Map Fair.

By Rodolfo Roman
Special to The Miami Herald

For the nineteenth year, HistoryMiami will host the Miami International Map Fair next weekend at the museum in downtown Miami.

The fair will showcase the first printed maps of the New World and the first to show Cuba.

Rebecca Smith, head of special collections at HistoryMiami — formerly the Historical Museum of Southern Florida — said the museum saw a great opportunity for map fans.

“HistoryMiami saw that there was enough interest in maps and similar collections and we wanted a way to encourage interest in historic documents and also to support HistoryMiami’s map collection,” said Smith.

The map fair was started by staff and Joseph H. Fitzgerald, a local antique map collector. Maps will be showcased throughout the museum. The event has nurtured HistoryMiami’s map collection through donations of antique maps and contributions to the Fitzgerald-Kanner Trust said Victoria Cervantes, vice president of communications.

Dealers’ maps will be for sale priced from about $10 to thousands of dollars. There will be thousands of maps, most 100 to 400 years old. Wood engravings, copperplate engravings, lithographs and more printing techniques are all represented. Also, atlases and globes will be present. Maps by Mercator, Ortelius, Blaeu, Mitchell and many others are among this year’s offerings.

Serious collectors or casual buyers can browse and buy antique maps and rare books. Visitors may also bring in a map of their own collections for expert opinions and attend lectures.

“The serious collector usually specializes in a region or a topic, such as Cuba or navigational charts,” said Smith. “Some collectors shop for themselves; others for a library, museum or other cultural institution.”

The fair is the perfect place for map novice collectors.

“Many people build small collections based on personal interest—for example, maps of places where they have lived,” Smith said. “The Miami International Map Fair is an excellent place to find such maps.”

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/01/24/2605881/historic-maps-on-display-for-sale.html#storylink=misearch#storylink=cpy

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