Travel and Exploration

Special Collections has a number of materials related to travel and exploration.  The three largest holdings consist of around 400 travelogues and other published accounts of travel throughout Europe, approximately 100 of which focus on travel within Great Britain; around 150 titles related to travel in North and South America, including emigrants’ guides, sea expeditions, and published accounts of western expansion; and a collection of maps and atlases dating from the 16th century to the present.

How to Use the Collection

The collection is available to all users in the Special Collections Reading Room (room 401) during regular hours.  Materials do not circulate. Rare books may be used in the Special Collections Reading Room during service hours or by appointment.

With a few exceptions, the collection can be accessed through the MERLIN library catalog.  Advice on using MERLIN to search Special Collections can be found here.

Finding Aids for Travel and Exploration

Rare Book Collection


The Rare Book Collection is the default designation for materials in Special Collections that are acquired as individual items. Like Special…

Gary E. and Janet J. Venable Antiquarian Atlas & Map Collection


The Venable Collection documents the history of cartography, geography, and exploration from the sixteenth through the early twentieth century.…

John G. Neihardt Collection


Biographical Sketch John Gneisenau Neihardt (1881-1973) accepted a position at the University of Missouri-Columbia's Department of English in 1949…

Martin and Margaret Hiller Collection of Audiovisual Materials on China, 1945-1948


Biographical Sketch Martin Hiller was a captain in the Army Air Corps, the predecessor to the Air Force, and later retired as an Air…

Poster Collection


Scope and Contents The collection consists of posters from both World War I and World War II with a few tourist and other miscellaneous posters from…

William Least Heat-Moon Papers

Scope and Contents Material by Wililam Least Heat-Moon (b. 1939). Manuscripts and additional materials from six of the author’s…

Related Exhibits

Hiller Collection


The Hiller Collection documents cities, industries, farming, and everyday life in China during the second phase of the Chinese Civil...

Commercial Art: Travel Posters in Special Collections


This exhibit focuses on nine European travel posters from Spain, France, Italy, Britain, Germany, and Norway. In a century of...

Selected Items

Hiller 09-004 : Nanking Great Hall of the People


Photograph of Nanjing Great Hall of the People. Designed by Fuquan Xi and built in 1936. It was largest and most advanced facilities of the…

Map Illustrating the Plan of the Defences of the Western and North Western Frontier, as Proposed by the Hon. J. R. Poinsett Sec. of War, in his report of Dec. 30, 1837.


Map showing the lands just west of the Mississippi River from Fort Snelling in Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico. Shows the lands of the Omaha, Pawnee,…

The United States of America confirmed by treaty 1783.


Lists the original territorial divisions of New England, New York, Virginia, Carolina and the states and territories created from them. Shows…

Map of Louisiana, Texas, and Arkansas.


Shows cities, railroads, military outposts, areas of Indian habitation, and geographic features for Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and a portion of New…

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