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Category: Discovery

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John Thomson’s Illustrations of China and Its People, 1873-1874 John Thomson (1837-1921), a pioneering Scottish geographer and traveler, was the first known photographer to document the people and landscape of China for publication and dissemination to the Western world. Between 1868 and 1872, he traveled over 6,500 kilometers with his cumbersome camera and equipment, darkroom and chemicals capturing all aspects of Chinese life. The photographs in these four volumes show the many sides of China: sweeping landscapes, royalty and ruling classes, merchants and economic activity, everyday life, and the faces of men, women, and children. Thomson was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, the son of a tobacco spinner and seller.

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       The written literature about Inuit/Eskimo peoples is a rich resource of great value to today’s students, scholars, educators, researchers, and northern residents. Yet many of the most interesting and valuable accounts derived from early contact situations are rare, out-of-print, or otherwise unavailable—especially to northern communities. The goal of the Hubert Wenger Eskimo Database project has been to make many of these early and primary accounts more widely available through digital media.         Nearly 200 titles—primarily books and journal articles—have been included in the database and are uniformly searchable with powerful text-retrieval software.

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The Illustrated Voyage Artists aboard voyages of discovery and exploration were given the task of making an objective record of the landscapes, people, flora and fauna of the lands they visited.  One would not expect, given the focus on creating an accurate visual record for these expeditions, that there would have been room for the expression of artistic vision.

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The collection contains 101 of the Champlain Society's volumes (almost 50,000 printed pages) dealing with exploration and discovery over three centuries. It includes first-hand accounts of Samuel de Champlain's voyages in New France as well as the diary from Sir John Franklin's first land expedition to the Arctic, 1819-22.

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This site documents two exploratory surveys of the Barren Lands region west of Hudson Bay, in northern Manitoba and Saskatchewan and the area now known as Nunavut. Drawing on materials from the J.B. Tyrrell, James Tyrrell and related collections at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto, it includes over 5,000 images from original field notebooks, correspondence, photographs, maps and published reports.

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American Journeys contains more than 18,000 pages of eyewitness accounts of North American exploration, from the sagas of Vikings in Canada in AD1000 to the diaries of mountain men in the Rockies 800 years later. Read the words of explorers, Indians, missionaries, traders and settlers as they lived through the founding moments of American history. View, search, print, or download more than 150 rare books, original manuscripts, and classic travel narratives from the library and archives of the Wisconsin Historical Society. To get started, simply select an activity on the toolbar above. Funded by the U.S. Institute of Museum & Library Services and by private donors, American Journeys is a collaborative project of the Wisconsin Historical Society and National History Day.

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About the Collection The First American West presents a digital resource created from selections drawn from the collections of the Filson Historical Society and the University of Chicago. Each of these institutions has realized the critical role that primary source material plays in the research and teaching of history. The First American West draws on the interconnected holdings of the two institutions to create an integrated collection that preserves critical primary sources and presents a fuller and more diverse picture of the exploration and settlement of the trans-Appalachian west. The Filson Historical Society's origins and the University of Chicago's holdings on the trans-Appalachian west both have their roots in the activities of Reuben T. Durrett (1824-1913).

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The fourth in a series of online collections from Harvard University, Expeditions and Discoveries delivers maps, photographs, and published materials, as well as field notes, letters, and a unique range of manuscript materials on selected expeditions between 1626 and 1953. The collection is made possible with the generous support of the Arcadia Fund . In the 19th and 20th centuries, Harvard University played a significant role—as underwriter, participant, collector, and repository—for pace-setting expeditions around the world. For Internet users, Expeditions and Discoveries provides selective access to Harvard’s multidisciplinary records of those expeditions.

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328 reads