Thursday, October 27, 2011

Haunted Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries

Eerie, Indiana: Maps of Haunted Places Available from Ball State University Libraries

Former GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) student-assistant Casey Gentis created a special map for a spooky October 2006 map display in Ball State University Libraries. Gentis researched legends of haunted locations in Indiana and created a map of some of the sites. Former student-assistant Jenny Wyatt then re-created the map for digital format using Adobe Illustrator for a 2009 map display: Allegedly Haunted Indiana Map. The map is still a popular attraction of the Collection.

Gentis discovered, interestingly, that most Indiana college campuses are allegedly haunted. The map features stories about locations at Purdue University, the University of Notre Dame, Indiana University, Valparaiso University, St. Joseph’s College, Huntington College, the University of St. Francis, Earlham College, Franklin College, Hanover College, and Ball State University. A prevalence of haunted libraries can also be viewed on the map.

Allegedly Haunted Indiana Map is currently exhibited on the front windows of the GRMC on the second floor of Bracken Library. The map is also available in PDF-format from the University Libraries’ Cardinal Scholar repository at  A map of haunted locations in the United States based on the Atlas of the Mysterious in North America from the Atlas Collection is also available from Cardinal Scholar at  The maps can be printed for display or research.

For more information about these maps, please contact the GRMC at 765/285-1097.

Baseball Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries

World Series of Maps: Baseball Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries

As the World Series reaches its final games, the Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) offers baseball fans and others a glimpse at some baseball-related maps. The GRMC includes a travel map locating all of the Major League Baseball stadiums. Also the Atlas of Sport available in the Atlas Collection features maps on the “American game,” including the map shown above (click to enlarge) depicting the number of high-school boys playing baseball in school leagues, with Iowa leading the nation.

The GRMC has also created custom maps related to the history of baseball. Black Diamonds: Negro League Baseball Teams, 1920-1949, (shown above) was created in association with the documentary Black Baseball in Indiana, a film created as an immersive learning project by students of Geralyn Strecker, Assistant Professor in the Department of English. This map shows the location of the Negro League teams in the United States. Photographs featured on the map are from the book Playing America’s Game by Michael L. Cooper. The map is available for use from the Cardinal Scholar repository at Copies of the map can be printed on the large-format plotter in the GRMC (charged to Bursar’s account) for exhibits, classroom or personal use.

Another map, The Girls of Summer: All-American Girls Professional Baseball League Teams, 1943-1954, (click to enlarge above) commemorates the women who played professionally beginning during World War II. The map was created for Women’s History Month and is based on the book A Whole New Ballgame: The Story of All-American Girls Professional Baseball League by Sue Macy available from the Educational Resources Collections. This map is also available from Cardinal Scholar at All maps are also available via interlibrary loan.

For more information about these or other cartographic resources, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Muncie Mini-Marathon Course Map

America’s Hometown Race: Muncie Mini-Marathon This Weekend

The Muncie Mini-Marathon will take place in the city and through the Ball State University campus beginning at 9 A.M. on Saturday, October 28. The course of the race (above map) begins near the Ball State campus and takes runners through historic Muncie. Participants will pass Beneficence, Shafer Tower, Minnetrista Culture Center, the Appeal to the Great Spirit statue, McCulloch Park, the Ball brothers’ homes, and the White River Greenway. (Drivers should be aware that these streets will be closed until noon Saturday).

The event is open to runners and walkers and also includes a 5K walk and run and a one-mile walk. To register or for more information, please visit

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Food-Related Cartographic Resources at Ball State University Libraries

Mapping Fast Food

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) on the second floor of Bracken Library updates its collection of cartographic resources to provide current information for research and learning. Maps and atlases that provide a variety of useful information on topical issues are acquired for the Collection.

One of the newest atlases available in the Atlas Collection is the Atlas of Food: Who Easts What, Where, and Why. The atlas contains maps about farming, agricultural trade, genetic modification, organic farming, restaurants, consumption, and other issues related to the global food system. The map above (click to enlarge) shows the amount of cereal produced in regions around the world. The atlas also includes charts and other graphics, including the graph showing the number of Wal-Mart stores in each region (above).

The State of the World Atlas is another atlas that could be used to provide visual aids for papers and presentations. The atlas includes maps and graphics related to women’s issues, religion, war, the environment, education, healthcare and other current world topics. The graph above shows the number of McDonald’s restaurants added to regions around the world.

The GRMC also provides information about cartographic resources on the Internet for research, learning, and sometimes entertainment value. For example, McDonald’s announced the return of the “McRib” sandwich at select restaurant locations. This Web page actually maps the location of the popular sandwich around the country:

For more information about these cartographic resources or how to use maps as visual aids, please contact or visit the GRMC Monday through Friday from 8:00 to 5:00.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Ball State University Libraries' Maps in the News

Places in the News: Ball State University Libraries’ Maps of Turkey, Tunisia, Syria, Kenya, and Uganda

Ercis, near the Turkey epicenter, from the Lonely Planet Turkey Travel Atlas

Central Intelligence Agency map of Uganda ethnic groups

Nairobi, Kenya region from the Cultural Atlas of Africa

Tunis, Tunisia region

These maps are available from the GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) on the second floor of Bracken Library.  The GRMC is open Monday through Friday from 8 to 5.

Ball State University Libraries Creates Custom GIS Maps

Ball State University Libraries Offer Customized GIS Mapping

By Angela Gibson, GIS Specialist

Among all the unique services that the University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) offers, customized map creation that meets specified scale, cartographic, and dataset requirements is one that is particularly appreciated by students and faculty. The GRMC regularly receives requests from students, faculty, staff, and community members to produce GIS maps using both public and personal datasets. The format for this data is Excel databases, addresses, GPS points, historic maps, Google KML files, and sometimes hand-drawn illustrations.

In the past year, the GRMC has provided valuable assistance in the form of customized GIS maps to grant proposals such as a Promise Neighborhood grant being sought by the Department of Elementary Education, and an Office of Institutional Diversity grant that used customized GIS mapping to relocate Indy’s historic Washington Street Park, which was the site of the first Negro League Baseball game and home of the Indianapolis ABC’s ball team.

The GRMC GIS Specialist has also worked annually with personnel to produce customized school district maps showing Indiana Advanced Placement Exam Score data released by the Indiana Department of Education. These maps have been posted at the Indiana Statehouse and used by the Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education in an effort to identify specific schools districts that may need extra assistance and to showcase districts that are excelling.

Both students and local community members request various GIS maps for class projects and inclusion into research papers. For example, graduate students in the Department of Biology have requested to have GPS data of water sampling points geocoded onto various different map backgrounds to highlight the relation of their sites to urban, residential, and rural land-use types, and to identify the specific watershed that contains each individual site.

Other customers have requested customized maps of a more recreational nature, such as maps that show the bathymetric contours of local fishing sites like Prairie Creek Reservoir and Summit Lake State Park, and elevation maps of favorite hunting and hiking areas.

For more information about having a GIS map created with your data, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Rinker Center for International Programs Culture Exchange Program Today

Rinker Center for International Programs Hosts Weekly Culture Exchange Program

The Rinker Center for International Programs hosts hour-long Culture Exchange presentations every Wednesday at noon in Student Center room 102. Each week a different country is highlighted, and presenters are typically natives who can offer an insider’s look into their country’s culture.

This week the presentation features Farah Alam teaching about the Diwali festival of South Asia. Diwali (Deepavali) is popularly known as “the festival of lights” and is an important one-day festival in Hinduism, Jainism, and Sikhism. Deepavali is an official holiday in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Mauritius, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname, Malaysia, Singapore, and Fiji (shown above).  The Tally also features a dish inspired by the country presented every Wednesday.

Next week’s presentation will be given by Sophie De Hond about Netherlands. A presentation about the holy pilgrimage to Mecca will be on November 2. Countries featured for the rest of the semester are Pakistan, Peru, Bangladesh, and Libya.

The University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) provides posters for the Culture Exchange every week. The posters feature maps and photographs from atlases depicting the culture of the country. These posters are available for use for other presentations, exhibits, or in classrooms from the Cardinal Scholar institutional repository at Just type in the name of a country in the search box on Cardinal Scholar to save or print a copy of the poster.

For more information, please contact the GRMC or the Rinker Center for International Programs.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Laura Ling Speaks at Ball State University

Laura Ling at Ball State University: Mapping the Journey of Hope

Journalist Laura Ling presented “Journey of Hope” at Ball State University’s Pruis Hall last night. Ling recounted her time in captivity in North Korea and showed a video featuring footage from assignments in Mexico, Myanmar, Turkey, and other places around the world for the Current Network.

The National Geographic map of China (click to enlarge) shows the border with North Korea where Ling and journalist Euna Lee were captured along the Tumen River in March 2009. After being sentenced to 12 years of hard labor, Ling was allowed to return to the United States after diplomatic efforts by President Clinton.

During the presentation, Ling described North Korea as literally a “black hole.” She referenced seeing a satellite map of the world with South Korea lit up “like Las Vegas on steroids” and North Korea literally appearing completely dark on the map. Details from the National Geographic Earth at Night satellite map shown above graphically demonstrates this fact with both South Korea and Japan shown with white lights and North Korea nearly invisible.

These maps are available for research and learning in the GIS Research and Map Collection on the second floor of Bracken Library. Maps circulate for two weeks or longer. For more information, please call 765-285-1097.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Travel Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries

Maps Available for Fall Break Destinations

The GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) on the second floor of Bracken Library offers over 140,000 maps for circulation. Some of the most popular maps in the collection include convenient travel maps of tourist destinations. Ball State students planning a weekend getaway for this weekend or for the upcoming fall break may wish to check out some of the maps of places around central Indiana.

This is the first weekend of the Parke County Covered Bridge Festival. This annual event is headquartered in Rockville and includes guided tours of the covered bridges and crafters, vendors, and entertainment. The GRMC has available two different maps featuring the covered bridges of Parke County. The map of Parke County (shown above) features points of interest and information about camping sites, horseback riding, and boat rental and canoeing on the Wabash River and at the Raccoon Recreation Area near Hollandsburg.

Another central Indiana location is Whitewater Memorial State Park in Liberty, Indiana. The park features a 200 acre lake, family cabins and camping, and nine miles of hiking trails from easy to rugged. The GRMC has maps of this and other state parks available for circulation.

Another resource available from the GRMC is Indiana State Parks: A Guide to Hoosier Parks, Reservoirs, and Recreation Areas by John Goll. This book features detailed maps and helpful information about visiting any of the state parks throughout Indiana and is an excellent guide for campers, hikers, fishermen, boaters, hunters, and nature lovers.

Maps from the GRMC circulate for two weeks or longer. And many of the travel maps are waterproof so they can be used on excursions.

For more information about these maps or any other resources, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097 Monday through Friday from 8:00 to 5:00 p.m.