Thursday, March 27, 2008

Students Create Poster Exhibits Using Ball State University Libraries' Plotter Printers

Exhibit Posters Printed in the GRMC

The Ball State University Office of Academic Research and Sponsored Programs’ 13th annual Sandra L. Smith Student Symposium was held in the Student Center on Tuesday, March 25. The Student Symposium gives students an opportunity to present their research and creative and scholarly endeavors to the public. Most of the presentations at the Symposium take the form of a poster exhibit, and students are awarded prizes for the best presentation.

Students participating in the Symposium visited the Geospatial Resources & Map Collection (GRMC) in Bracken Library to print their posters using the two large-format plotters. Over 35 students used the plotters in the GRMC to print their posters in the two days leading up to the Symposium. Students studying physics, anthropology, biology, natural resources, and health science were able to create and print their exhibit posters in the GIS lab of the GRMC.

The color plotters print on 42-inch and 36-inch wide paper. The cost for printing is $8 for the first 36 inches; $10 for the next 36-inches; and $12 for printing up to 108 inches. Charges are sent directly to student or departmental Bursar’s accounts.

For additional information about large-format printing in the GRMC, please call 765/285-1097 from 8:00 to 5:00 Monday through Friday.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Native American Resources at Ball State University Libraries

Native American Resources for Learning, Teaching, and Research at Ball State University Libraries

by Hannah Cox, Archives and Special Collections Supervisor, and Melissa Gentry, Map Collection Assistant

Students, faculty, and other researchers looking for resources about Native Americans can find them in abundance in the Archives and Special Collections and the Geospatial Resources and Map Collection at the Ball State University Libraries. While much of the material can be found through the Libraries’ online public catalog CardCat, some items of potential interest require more in-depth assistance. For this reason, collection guides to Native American resources are being updated.

The material in Archives and Special Collections is divided into two sections, with the first focusing specifically on the Miami and Delaware people in Indiana and the second encompassing resources of a more general nature. The first section of the subject guide has been subdivided into Manuscript Collections, Theses and Dissertations, and Rare Book Monographs. This includes newspaper articles, manuscripts, books, maps, and photographs concerning local Native Americans. The Miami Indian Collection and books from such authors as Otho Winger are two examples of local resources. The second section consists primarily of rare books about Native American tribes outside of Delaware county, as well as official documents and reports. Many of the books in this area were written from the perspective of missionaries, travelers, or soldiers, although there are several written by Native Americans. The online Native American Collection Guide can be found under the Collection Areas subheading on the Archives and Special Collections homepage.

The Geospatial Resources and Map Collection (GRMC) also has a number of resources that can be used in research and learning about Native Americans. The Map Collection includes several maps published by the U.S. federal government showing the location of “Indian lands” over time, Indian land cession maps, Native American languages maps, as well as the location of current reservations throughout the United States.

Historic maps in the Collection depict the homelands and influences of Native Americans. The Making of America series of maps from National Geographic display regional homelands throughout North America. The map, Indiana, the Influence of the Indian upon its History: with Indian and French Names for Natural and Cultural Locations, shows the origins of place names in Indiana. Montana: Frontier, Pioneer: a one-page History Dedicated to the Old Timers (shown) depicts the history of the state of Montana.

The Atlas Collection also includes many resources for the study of Native Americans. The Atlas of American Indian Affairs, Atlas of American Migration, and the Illustrated Atlas of Native American History are excellent resources about Native Americans in general. Other atlases have a more specific focus, including Atlas of the Sioux Wars, The Navajo Atlas, and A Zuni Atlas.

The Native American materials are a valuable resource for research and learning. Students from Anthropology 471/571 Ethnohistory visited the GRMC for an instructional session about using cartographic resources. Students were assigned a special project using maps and other sources to research the Native American origins of places in Indiana. Historical researchers from Indianapolis were also able to use maps and aerial photography from the GRMC to assist in the identification of a possible Native American ritual site near Yorktown, Indiana. An online guide to Native American resources available in the GRMC and Atlas Collection will soon be available on the GRMC Web page. Most of the resources in the Collections are currently available for searches in CardCat.

For more information on these and other resources, contact the Archives and Special Collections at 765/285-5078 or the Geospatial Resources and Map Collection at 765/285-1097.

New Map Collection on Ball State University Libraries' Digital Media Repository

New Map Collection Now Accessible through the Ball State University Libraries’ Digital Media Repository

by Maren Read, Archivist for Manuscript Collections, Archives and Special Collections

Students, faculty, researchers, and scholars worldwide now have online access to new resources through the Ball State University’s Digital Media Repository (DMR), a project of the University Libraries. The Muncie Sanborn® Fire Insurance Maps Collection includes 200 maps showing the commercial, industrial, and residential sections of Muncie, Indiana, from 1883 through 1911. The maps were originally produced by the Sanborn Map Company to assist fire insurance agents in determining the degree of hazard and establish premiums for particular properties. Today these maps are used by students and scholars in a variety of fields, including history, urban planning, historic preservation, and genealogy. An online tutorial entitled “Maps and Cartography: Using Sanborn® Fire Insurance Maps” by Melissa Gentry, of the Geospatial Resources and Map Collection, and a handout on how to search this collection in the DMR will be available online soon.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Focus on Europe Event at University Libraries

Focus on Europe Panel in University Libraries

The European Studies Committee at Ball State University will be hosting the Focus on Europe: Spring 2008 panel discussion on Thursday, March 20 at 5:00 P.M. in Bracken Library’s Forum Room, room 225. The panel entitled “Fortress Europe—A New Wall? Immigration in Europe” will be chaired by Constantin Schreiber, a graduate student from Muenster, Germany. The event will include students from European countries and cover topics of modern European politics, culture, and society.

The Geospatial Resources & Map Collection in Bracken Library is featuring a map of Europe on display to highlight the Focus on Europe event. The map includes inset maps showing the foreign-born population of Europe and net migration of European countries.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New Large-Format Plotter and Laminator in Ball State University Libraries

New Large-Format Plotter and Large-Format Laminator Now Available in the Geospatial Resources and Map Collection

The University Libraries’ Geospatial Resources & Map Collection (GRMC) recently acquired two new resources, an additional large-format plotter and a large-format laminator. This equipment is available for use by students, faculty, staff, and personnel in academic and administrative areas.

The new plotter was added to keep up with the demand from students, faculty, and departments that use plotting services. The newly acquired large-format plotter is a 42” HP 4500ps that complements the current 36” HP 10055cm. The new roll laminator accepts documents that are up to 42” wide. It is available for use by anyone in the Ball State community at a cost of $3 per linear foot.

Plotter Printing Costs
Posters either 36” wide or 42” wide:

Length of 36” and under $ 8
Length of 37” to 72” $10
Length of 73” to 108” $12

All charges for using this equipment are processed through the user’s Bursar account. This is necessary because GRMC personnel do not handle cash, and checks are not accepted.

For more information, contact the GRMC during regular business hours Monday through Friday 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.

GIS Specialist Attends Indianapolis Annual Conference

Annual Indiana Geographic Information Council Conference Report

Angela Gibson, GIS Specialist, attended the Annual Indiana GIS Conference in Indianapolis on February 19-20, 2008. The conference included workshops centered on the ArcGIS Server, Web-based mapping with Google and Microsoft, and new online environmental sensitivity tools.

Shorter length sessions were offered for a variety of subjects, such as the state of the USGS National Geospatial programs, development of the Indiana Historical Aerial Photo Index, usability of free and low-cost GIS software, and a variety of subject and various task-specific topics. Two especially interesting software programs available at little to no cost that allow for desktop and Internet viewing, manipulating map data, and even some analysis were discussed. The first is AccuGlobe from Digital Data Technologies (for PC) and My World GIS from Northwestern University (for MAC). AccuGlobe Desktop 2007 can be downloaded for free at and offers many GIS standards such as support for ECW, JPEG, and PNG layers, and legend grouping. My World GIS is a Geographic Information System (GIS) designed specifically for use in educational settings. It provides a selected subset of the features of a professional GIS environment,

This year’s Annual Indiana GIS Conference offered a plethora of new ideas, technologies, and creative uses of GIS technology, many of which will prove to be very useful for students and faculty who use the Geospatial Resources and Map Collection at Bracken Library.

February Events in the Geospatial Resources & Map Collection

February 2008 Events in the Geospatial Resources & Map Collection

Students from the College of Architecture and Planning Environmental Design Studio researched topographic maps of United States national parks in the Geospatial Resources & Map Collection for a class project in February. Eighty-five students visited the GRMC to locate specific points on maps to determine a development site. Anthropology 471/571 students also used the resources of the GRMC for a class assignment following a specialized instructional session on February 4.

Students from English 103 copied maps from various countries around the world in order to create culture packets for a class assignment. Geography 341 students completed an assignment requiring a critical analysis of atlases in the Atlas Collection.

Students participating in the College Mentoring Program visited the GRMC on February 11 for a specialized instructional session on Native American resources, and maps of France were used for another mentoring presentation.

Students from Industrial Technology & Construction Management 460 and Foundations of Education 420 used GIS software, digital aerial photography, and census data to create specialized maps in the GIS lab of the GRMC. The GIS Specialist also created a custom map for a student giving a presentation on school shootings (shown above).

Community groups using maps and other resources from the GRMC in February included the Center for Historic Preservation, the Community Center for Vital Aging, the Association of Lifelong Learners, and the Canoeing Club of Chicago. Pioneer Consulting Services and Archeological Consultants of Ossian also used the resources of the GRMC for site development research. Researchers also used maps from the GRMC for information about two sites under consideration for the National Register of Historic Places.

For more information about the resources of the GRMC, please call 765-285-1097 from Monday through Friday.

Ball State University Smoke-free Campus Map

Ball State University Map of Designated Smoking Areas

Ball State University will be a smoke-free campus starting Monday, March 17, immediately following spring break. Smoking will be prohibited in all university buildings and outdoor campus areas except designated locations shown on the map. More information about the policy, including designated smoking locations may be found at