Monday, November 25, 2013

End-of-Semester Printing and GIS Project Information

FAQ: “How Do I Print a Large Poster?”  “How Do I Connect to Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Data Server?”

Students are completing many final projects and homework assignments for the fall semester.  Often students must create presentations or large posters as a final project.  The Ball State University Libraries GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) has two large-format plotter printers available for use by members of the Ball State University community.

“How do I print a large poster?  How long does it take?  How much does it cost?”  Students can create a poster using a slide designed in Microsoft PowerPoint.  A guide explaining how to design a classroom or conference poster is available in Cardinal Scholar. 

A poster usually takes about fifteen minutes to print, but if many people are printing at the same time, the wait time will be longer.  Students and staff are charged for printing through their Bursar’s account, with the cost dependent on the size of the poster.  Printing on the plotters is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 

One of the most frequently asked questions in the GRMC arises from students trying to access the Libraries’ GIS Data Server in order to complete a GIS homework assignment or special project.

Members of the Ball State University community can access this data by entering user names and passwords if not already logged in to the Ball State University network: 

  • In order to map a network drive, click on the Start button; right-click "Computer;" then click "Explore."
  • In the Tools menu or on the Graphical User Interface (GUI), click "Map Network Drive."
  • In the Drive box, click the drive letter "L."  (Note: By default ArcGIS Desktop uses full path names. Always map data to the same letter drive in order to avoid having to repair the data source when opening a map document).
  • In the Folder box, type \\libgis\data.  (If not logged in to the BSU network, a BSU user name and password will be needed to access this data).
The data on this server is read-only, so needed datasets must be copied and pasted (using ArcCatalog) to an iLocker folder or a USB drive.  Also, the data on the server was provided by the Delaware and Henry County GIS Departments and must be used for education and research purposes only and may not be provided to third parties.

A tutorial with screenshots explaining how to map to the GIS Data Server is available on the GRMC Webpage.  For more information about using GIS, please contact Angela Gibson, GIS Specialist, at 765-285-1097.

Friday, November 22, 2013

GIS Map of the Life of President John F. Kennedy

ESRI GIS Map and Video Depicts the Life of John F. Kennedy

On the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, leading GIS software developer ESRI has created an interactive story map of the major events in the life of the former president.  “Even though he was only President for three years, John F. Kennedy has become one of the most iconic individuals in American history."

Users can take a geographic tour of key moments in Kennedy’s life, from his birth in Brookline, Massachusetts, through his early travels in Europe, his tour of duty during World War II with the U.S. Navy, to his speech at the Berlin Wall, to his assassination in Dallas, Texas.  The map also features videos of famous speeches and how the geography of Dealey Plaza affected the events on November 22, 1963.  The map and video may also be embedded in other Web sites.

For more information about using story maps, visit the ESRI Web page or the Storytelling with Maps gallery.

(Photograph above shows candidate John Kennedy visiting  Muncie, Indiana, in 1960 and is from the Ball State University Libraries' Archives and Special Collections.  All rights reserved).

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Gettysburg Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries

“Four Score and Seven Years Ago…” 
Gettysburg Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries

The National Park Service is commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address with special events at the Gettysburg National Military Park on November 16-23.  President Lincoln delivered the famous address—which defined the meaning of the war—on November 19, 1863 at the dedication of a cemetery.

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) on the second floor of Bracken Library includes various maps of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.  A National Geographic map, 1863: Turning Point of the Civil War, shows the movements of two infantry regiments between Chancellorsville and Gettysburg.

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania: Illustrated Gettysburg Battlefield Map and Story (top above, click to enlarge) was published in 1959 and includes Civil War troops’ movements and positions.  The map also includes several points of interest.

The map, Gettysburg Battlefield, (bottom map above) was published by McElfresh Map Company in 1994.  This set of maps includes depictions of the first, second and third days’ battlefield and are printed reproductions of watercolor originals.  The maps include land use, vegetation cover, field crops, field lines, and farmers’ names as in 1863.

The map, Gettysburg Invasion and Retreat, was published as a part of the Maryland Civil War trails series and is a regional tourist map showing Civil War-related points of interest and recommended highway tours in five Maryland counties and adjacent parts of Pennsylvania.

The Maps of Gettysburg: An Atlas of the Gettysburg Campaign, June 3-July 13, 1863 was published in 2007 and is available from the Atlas Collection.  The atlas includes 144 full-page color enhanced maps that cover the advance, battle, and retreat.

Maps from the GRMC circulate for two weeks or longer.  Atlases circulate for 28 days. 

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

Monday, November 18, 2013

Ball State University Immersive Learning Project Speaker at Bracken Library

The Lenape on the Wapahani River:  Friends of Bracken Library Program November 19 at Ball State University Libraries

Christopher Flook, Instructor in the Ball State University Department of Telecommunications, will present a program “The Lenape on the Wapahani River” for the Friends of Alexander M. Bracken Library on Tuesday, November 19 at 7:30 p.m. in Bracken Library room 104.  Flook and students Kayla Eiler and Alina Beteringhe will detail the history of Native Americans who settled along the White River and the documentary film being created as an immersive learning project.

The event is free and open to the public. Free parking is available in the Emens parking structure next to Bracken Library after 7:00 p.m.  For more information, please contact John Straw at 765-285-5078 or  

Friday, November 15, 2013

Ball State University Libraries' GIS Research and Map Collection Offers Community Maps Class

The History Geography Maps Class at Cornerstone Center for the Arts November 18

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) will be presenting a class for the community featuring maps from the collection.  The class will be held at the Cornerstone Center for the Arts (520 East Main, Muncie) on November 18 at 6:00.

Muncie’s Maps: A Hidden History will explore the history of the city of Muncie and the state of Indiana using maps from the GRMC.  More than just cartographic resources, maps can shed light on the history, economy, and culture of a place.  Historic maps will show the evolution of the city from a Native American village on the White River to a metropolitan city during the Gas Boom to an industrial center to the diverse city of today.

For more information about the class, visit the Cornerstone Web page or call Carly Acree King, Director of Education and Communication, at 765-281-9503.  Contact Melissa Gentry in the GRMC at 765-285-1097.  

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Native American Heritage Month Map Exhibit at Ball State University Libraries

Native American Heritage Month Maps Exhibit

The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) is commemorating Native American Heritage Month with a special exhibit in Bracken Library.  The exhibit features maps and photographs from The Historical Atlas of Native Americans by Ian Barnes, which is available in the GRMC and Atlas Collection on the second floor of Bracken Library.

The maps include depictions of the ancient Native American culture and trade areas, Pontiac’s and Tecumseh’s Wars, Chief Joseph’s retreat, Indian wars in the west from 1850-1900, and Native American resettlement areas.  Photographs include prominent figures in Native American history—Sitting Bull, Sarah Winnemucca, Ely Samuel Ponder, Osceola, Gertrude Simmons Bonnin, and Tecumseh.  Other photographs show Oglala warriors on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota in 1908 and Comanche code talkers from World War II.

The exhibit is available in PDF-format from the Ball State University Libraries’ Cardinal Scholar.  Teachers and others may print off a copy of the exhibit for use in the classroom or other projects and displays for research and learning.

This exhibit is located in the front windows of the GRMC on the second floor of Bracken Library and will be available through the month of November. 

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

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Ball State University Celebrates GIS Day November 20

Ball State University GIS Day November 20, 2013

GIS Day is celebrated this year on Wednesday, November 20.  The Ball State University GIS Knowledge Group will be hosting an event in Bracken Library in the Schwartz Complex and Bracken Library room 104 located just off the lobby from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Visitors can learn about GIS resources on campus, watch brief presentations from faculty, students, and staff describing class and research projects incorporating GIS methods, and view posters created by GIS users around campus.  A poster and presentation competition will award prizes to participants showcasing their work.

Presentations begin at 11 through noon.  The poster competition begins at noon, and users can browse information about GIS software and data resources on campus and participate in a question and answer session with the GIS Knowledge Group at this time.  More presentations will be held from 1 to 2 p.m.

Faculty, staff, and students interested in presenting one of the five-minute overviews about class or research GIS projects can contact Angela Gibson to reserve a block of time for the presentation at

GIS users wishing to create a GIS project poster for the competition may print posters free of charge in the Cooper Science GIS lab.  Contact Zaine Venter for information about printing at

This event is free and open to the public.  Anyone interested in GIS technology is invited to participate, view the posters and presentations, and vote for the best GIS projects.  For more information, please contact the Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection at 765-285-1097.