Exhibit Theme

Mapping the World

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Notes on Surveying for Officers of...
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Notes on Surveying for Officers of U.S. Exploring Expedition, notebook of Captain Charles Wilkes, ca. 1838-1842

Largely self-taught in surveying and navigation, Charles Wilkes gained additional experience in the Navy before he led the U.S. Exploring Expedition. Charged with mapping uncharted Pacific shores, Wilkes wrote this handbook for his officers, including a diagram of how to survey an island. The detailed nautical charts they created served navigators for over a century.

Manuscript Division, Library of Congress