Where is home?
“Home is where one starts from.” - T.S. Eliot
New York City is home to over 8 million people and plays hosts to millions of visitors from the NYC metropolitan region, the U.S. and travelers from around the world. Many NYC artists, writers and researchers - a group that undoubtedly includes some of the world’s most intellectually curious minds - make a pilgrimage to NYPL’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building (aka “the Main Building”) to use the library’s extensive collection of rare books, manuscripts, prints and antiquarian maps. Equally as important are visitors who are drawn to the Main Building because they want to marvel at its ornate architectural details, frescos, and sumptuous reading rooms.
Throughout its 100 year history NYPL's Main Building has hosted scholars, students, and tourist from all walks of life and every nation on earth. In celebration of the building’s centennial the Lionel Pinkus and Princess Firyal Map Division is exhibiting “Where is home?” an interactive cartographic exhibit whereby participants help create a visual representation of the places of origin – “hometowns” – of library visitors by placing a map pin into one or more antiquarian map facsimiles. The maps, which will vary over the course of the exhibit, currently include Herman Moll’s Europe (1701); Samuel Dunn’s A map of the world, with the latest discoveries (1774); Thomas S. Manning's Asia, according to the best authorities (1814); G.W. Colton ‘s Map of the country thirty three miles around the city of New York (1849) and Ernest Dudley Chase’s The United States of America (1935.)
In addition to marking their hometowns on the maps, participants can sign a visitor logbook to more accurately note the city, county/ administrative region and country in which they reside. At the conclusion of each month the map pins are removed and the interactive map exhibit begins anew when the next library visitor answers the question:
Where is home?