Compass, 18th Century (Inv. 35051) and Map of Switzerland, Early 19th Century (Inv. 10424). Do you think you would be able to navigate with these?
Subject: Map and Compass
Story: I grew up in a family of outdoor enthusiasts–backpacking, hiking, and camping were common activities of family bonding. My parents’ love of the natural world rubbed off on me: among my fondest childhood memories are my family’s weekend backpacking trips through the mountains of the American Pacific Northwest. During my venturings into nature, I became acquainted with the combined use of maps and compasses as instruments of navigation. I learned how to align maps with landmarks, triangulate my position on a map, and orient myself within a given terrain using a compass. Even more, I found the joy in this form of navigation–in tracking the progress made and distance gained during a long outing. In the near future I look forward to trying orienteering as a sport, which involves using these same tools to navigate towards a destination in an unfamiliar landscape.