As a public health precaution due to COVID-19, all Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo are temporarily closed. We are not announcing a reopening date at this time and will provide updates on our website and social media.

The Norie Atlas and the Guano Trade

the Noire Marine Atlas

This exhibition presented John Norie’s unique Marine Atlas, a book of sea charts dating to the early 19th century. Visitors learned about the historical context of the guano and nitrate trades, in which many of the swiftest and strongest 19th-century American square-rigged sailing ships participated. The Atlas was augmented by images and models of American clipper ships; pamphlets of the Pacific Guano Company of Woods Hole, Massachusetts; nitrate voyage track charts acquired from a member of the International Association of Cape Horners; and associated materials.