Hol­land map re­turns home

Sa­muel Hol­land’s 1765 map of P.E.I. fea­tured in new ex­hi­bi­tion

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT -

In the fall of 1765, work­ing un­der can­vas at his base camp at Ob­ser­va­tion Cove, P.E.I, on or­ders from the Bri­tish Crown, Sa­muel Hol­land, the surveyor-gen­eral of North Amer­ica, fin­ished the map he’d been work­ing on for over a year and shipped it to Lon­don, Eng­land.

Co-cu­rated by Is­land his­to­ri­ans, Boyde Beck and Ed­ward Mac­Don­ald, the ma­jor ex­hi­bi­tion ex­plores how this map was a prod­uct of im­pe­rial ri­val­ries and strate­gies for the Bri­tish Em­pire and the crit­i­cal role it played as a tem­plate for the set­tle­ment and de­vel­op­ment of P.E.I.

The ex­hi­bi­tion, which opens opens at the art gallery on Sun­day, July 5 at 2 p.m., was or­ga­nized by the P.E.I. Mu­seum and Her­itage Foun­da­tion, the Public Ar­chives and Records Of­fice of P.E.I. and the Con­fed­er­a­tion Cen­tre Art Gallery, in part­ner­ship with the Cana­dian Mu­seum of History.

Beck de­scribes it as a “re­mark­able tech­ni­cal achieve­ment; the first step in the most am­bi­tious map­ping pro­ject that the world had ever seen, com­plete map of Bri­tain’s North Amer­i­can Em­pire which, at the time, stretched from Florida to Hud­son Bay.”

“Now, for the first time since it left here 250 years ago, Hol­land’s map has come home to where it was made; to the province it helped to shape and de­fine,” he says.

The pro­vin­cial ar­chiv­ist agrees.

“The Hol­land Map is a foun­da­tional doc­u­ment. It set the di­rec­tion for Prince Ed­ward Is­land’s de­vel­op­ment and we are de­lighted to have it home for a visit,” says Jill MacMicken.

Art gallery di­rec­tor, Kevin Rice is ex­cited for the public.

“It will be fan­tas­tic to ac­tu­ally see this three by four me­tre 250year-old map! His­tor­i­cally, sci­en­tif­i­cally, and vis­ually it is an im­por­tant de­scrip­tion of the Is­land.”

This unique ex­hi­bi­tion high­lights the Hol­land Com­mem­o­ra­tion year with a once in a life­time op­por­tu­nity for young and old to see for the first time in North Amer­ica, the orig­i­nal hand drawn map of Sa­muel Hol­land’s sur­vey, says David Keenly­side, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the P.E.I. Mu­seum and Her­itage Foun­da­tion and chair of the Province’s Sa­muel Hol­land 250 Com­mem­o­ra­tions Com­mit­tee.

“Other Hol­land ar­ti­facts in this ex­hi­bi­tion tell the unique story of Hol­land’s life, his work, and the peo­ple of his gen­er­a­tion that shaped our early Is­land history.”

Re­cently con­served by The Na­tional Ar­chives, United King­dom, the map will be the fea­ture ar­ti­fact in the ex­hi­bi­tion. An il­lus­trated lec­ture de­tail­ing the ex­ten­sive con­ser­va­tion treat­ment on Hol­land’s large man­u­script map will be pre­sented by Lucy An­gus, on Mon­day July 6 at 2 p.m. at Con­fed­er­a­tion Cen­tre. An­gus is the UK Na­tional Ar­chives con­ser­va­tor who treated the Hol­land map.

For more in­for­ma­tion on gallery ex­hi­bi­tions and events, visit con­fed­er­a­tioncen­tre. com/art­gallery.

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