Scanning large formats : 1861 Map of Korea

by Angie Cope, AGSL

The UW Milwaukee Digital Collections hosts the American Geographical Society Library Digital Map Collection featuring nearly 2,000 maps. Everything from everyday local maps to historic treasures are included. One map, the Daedong yeojido or “Territorial Map of the Great East,” was added in 2009.

The map was part of a larger purchase by the American Geographical Society (AGS) of New York in 1895. Several maps, an atlas, and forty-three photographs were acquired from the father of American diplomat George C. Foulk. For more than one hundred years, the significance of those materials went largely unrecognized until 2008 when the map was recognized as a National Treasure in Korea.

1861 Map of Korea.
1861 Map of Korea.

In preparation for a 2009 symposium, scanning the map became a priority. The map is a wood block print on twenty-two folded sheets which presented a new scanning challenge to staff. When displayed open, the map measures nearly thirteen feet wide and twenty feet in length. The long sheets were designed to be folded accordion style making this large map easier to use.

korea3
Map spread out in the AGS Library to the full 13 x 22 feet in size

The map was scanned using a sheet feed Colortrak 4280 Color Scanner at a 300 dpi resolution. Images were saved as tiffs ranging in size from 24 MB to 95 MB with the composite image coming in at a walloping 213 MB.

Majority of maps are scanned using the sheet feed Colortrak 4280 Color Scanner.
Majority of maps are scanned using the sheet feed Colortrak 4280 Color Scanner.

The composite image was plotted for the event using a 60 inch wide Hewlett Packard 5500ps plotter.
The composite image was plotted for the event using a 60 inch wide Hewlett Packard 5500ps plotter.

The map is now available for viewing at the American Geographical Society Library Digital Map Collection where you can see details of each sheet, the manuscript index sheet and the composite view here: http://collections.lib.uwm.edu/cdm/ref/collection/agdm/id/829

More information about the symposium and the map can be found here:

http://www4.uwm.edu/libraries/AGSL/korean_maps.cfm

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