Cataloging News – November 2016

by Louise Ratliff
Social Sciences and Map Cataloger, UCLA,
and Vice-Chair of MAGIRT

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New LC Cartographic Resources Manual

The new LC Cartographic Resources Manual was published on the Cataloger’s Desktop platform in October this year. Compiled by the map catalogers in LC’s Geography and Map Division, the content of this newly revised manual is based on the old LC Map Cataloging Manual, which has been retired from Cataloger’s Desktop. While much of the text has not changed, some cataloging policies have been updated and revised, and there are some new examples, all in accordance with RDA. Interestingly enough, Chapter 8 on Reproductions hasn’t changed much at all. We clever map catalogers have been describing the piece in hand for decades, and now RDA has finally caught up with us! I recommend using the new manual along with Cartographic Materials (updated to 2005), which was written to interpret AACR2, and which does include some very helpful information pertaining to map characteristics. I believe it may now be out of print, but it is still available on Cataloger’s Desktop. There is also the 2015 publication RDA and Cartographic Resources, which is a valuable supplement. The 1991 edition of the Map Cataloging Manual may be downloaded from Google Books.

RDA update

In the July 2016 Cataloging News column I commented on some Fast Track updates to RDA that would take place in August. The official document of revisions can be found here (for those of you brave enough to read it):   Almost all of these revisions affect the description of cartographic materials. Basically this is a reorganization of the RDA sections and the creation of lists of vocabulary words so that the words can be entered into a glossary and the RDA Open Metadata Registry; they will now have URIs which can be used in a linked data environment.

There is also a distinction made between “Scale” and “Scale designation.” Scale is a ratio which can be expressed as a number, while Scale Designation is a list of the phrases we know and love, such as “Scale not given” and “Not drawn to scale.” Again, these phrases are defined and associated with URIs, and it will be easy to add new terms to the list as necessary. Follow this link to see the RDA Scale Designation: . Perhaps in future we will have RDA term lists for Projections and Relief, or we may instead refer to term lists with URIs created by other cartographic organizations. All this is to say that no significant changes were made to the cataloging rules, but the encoding of the properties and value vocabularies will enable our data to work in a linked data environment.

In the October Fast Track updates, a change was made to RDA section Recording Dimensions of Maps, Etc. which now allows recording the dimensions of a map in tenths of centimetres as an Alternative; the Alternative is no longer restricted to early printed and manuscript sheet maps. (LC does not follow the Alternative.)

Other RDA news….

The RDA Steering Committee (RSC) met in Frankfurt November 7-11, 2016. The latest information is posted here: where some decisions are briefly announced:

ALA Midwinter 2017, January 21-23, 2017 in Atlanta, GA

As usual, MAGIRT will have a meeting of the Cataloging of Cartographic Resources Interest Group, scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 22 at 8:30-10 in the conference center room B214. Please consult base line for the complete schedule of MAGIRT activities at ALA Midwinter (v. 37, no. 6, December 2016, to be published mid-December)

also the MAGIRT website, here:

Brief note about BIBFRAME

The BIBFRAME developers are hard at work at the Library of Congress building new profiles and editors to incorporate the BIBFRAME 2.0 vocabulary. The latest I’ve heard is that a new pilot will begin around March 2017. At that time, more properties will be available for creating new resource descriptions, and the new editors will be made available. See this link for the BF 2.0 vocabulary:

The Last WAML IB Map for 2016

Below is a very small detail from an old map of an imaginary place which is full of detail and some puzzlements. Held by both the Library of Congress and the British Library, it’s one I would love to see in person. It’s really large, 43 cm high and 177 cm wide, and was published in about 1918-1920 in London.

The subject heading, appropriately enough, is: Fairyland (Imaginary place) $v Maps, and the LC classification number is be G9930, for maps of imaginary places.

ancient-mappe-detailDetail from An Ancient Mappe of Fairyland: newly discovered and set forth
Adelphi, London : Sidgwick & Jackson, Ltd., [1920?]
Library of Congress –

Also available at the British Library:








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