The past two years have been very busy for the Royal Library in Copenhagen, especially as regards library computerisation. REX (The Royal Library Information System) now contains about 1,200,000 records and the lending system has also undergone an automation process. As many books as possible had to be provided with bar code stickers in as short a time as possible. To avoid having to close the library entirely for months it was decided instead to close only in the mornings only throughout the summer of 1991 and recruit all staff -without exception- to bar-code the books.
The Map Department too has had a busy time with computer-related work. The Danish National Bibliography. Cartographic Materials 1990 was produced on the basis of the Map Department computer records in the Royal Library's bibliographic database REX. This was a success, and we were asked to make the quinquennial cumulation The Danish National Bibliography. Cartographic Materials 1986-1990 by retro-conversion. I shall not elaborate on this topic as my colleague Susan Vejlsgaard will read a paper on the specific subject of retroconversion and the problems involved. The Map Department computer records for the Danish National Bibliography. Cartographic Materials 1990 have,together with the Danish National Bibliography and a selection of various library catalogues, been incorporated in a CD- ROM. This CD-ROM called BamC has been published by the Danish Library Centre as a project in order to estimate future demand by public and school libraries. The CD-ROM provides library users with an opportunity to get acquainted with this new medium. On 1 July the head of the Royal Library Department of Maps, Prints, and Photographs Ib R0nne Kejlbo retired. Research-librarian Henrik Dupont has succeeded him as Acting Head of the Department for the rest of the year. Henrik Dupont has been accepted as a member of the Standing Committee for Geography and Map Libraries of IFLA and also of the Danish National Committee for Geography.
This summer a modernization analysis of the Department of Maps, Prints, and Photographs has been started. The purpose of this analysis is: to throw light on the aims and responsibilities of the department, to examine the management structure, to determine policy for acquisition and disposal of materials, to determine conservation policy and, in this connection, to examine the possibilities of scanning our material. We have already acquired the equipment for building up a multimedia system. One of the more important functions of the Map Department is to select and provide the maps for exhibitions staged by the Royal Library and by other institutions in Denmark and abroad. This year, for example the Map Department contributed to the Royal Library summer exhibition Treasures from the Royal Library, exhibiting Maps of Denmark: Examples from five centuries, which spanned the period from the oldest printed map of Denmark to a satellite map. For their present exhibition the Danish National Museum has borrowed one of our rarest pieces: a pilgrim map Das ist der Rom-Weg made by Erhard Etzlaub about 1499. In future exhibitions we are to provide material for the Royal Library's celebration of Columbus' first voyage to America called The meeting of two worlds and an exhibition at the Danish Maritime Museum displaying charts of Denmark through the centuries.
The Danish Cartographic Society celebrated its twentieth anniversary in 1991. The society has proved to be of great importance in bringing together map users and map-producers in one association. Ib Ronne Kejlbo was Chairman of the Society troughout those twenty years, but when he retired from the Royal Library he also chose to retire from the chairmanship to devote himself to cartographic research. He is now an honorary member of the Society. Inger Grete Uldal from the Map Department has been elected as a member of the board of the Society.
In commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the death of Vitus Bering, a publication will appear (in English) in the near future in which Kejlbo has written the article Two Previously unknown Vitus Bering Maps. It is of interest to this forum that it is thanks to Dr. Franz Wawrik of the Austrian National Library that Ib Kejlbo became aware of the existence of one of these maps during the last LIBER-Meeting in Paris in 1990. At the moment, Kejlbo is applying the finishing touches to his book "Rare Globes", which will appear in the spring of 1993. A historical review of pre-1850 globes relating to Denmark, the book provides a globe inventory and biographies of globemakers. It will of course be illustrated. In the spring of 1994 Ib Kejlbo is planning to publish a book dealing with the history of the cartography of Greenland. The book will be published by the Royal Library and by Greenland in Danish, Greenlandic, and English.
Due to structural changes in many of the member institutions, the Working Group for Map Collections has not been very active in the past two years. However, we did hold a meeting at the Royal Library, among other things visiting the library's new section for aerial photographs.
The library of Copenhagen University's Geographic Institute held an exhibition on the occasion of the publication of the Atlas of Denmark, Series I, vol. 3. The Danish Soil Classification. The atlas is published in Danish and English.
From 1993 the library of the Danish Geological Survey plans to computerize their cataloguing, using a BRS system, and therefore not using the MARC format for cartographic materials. When time permits, the bulk of their 8,000 maps will also be catalogued in this system.
The Geodetic Institute, The Danish Cadastral Department and the Royal Danish Hydrographical Office were gathered under one roof on 1 April 1991. The new institution is called 'The National Survey and Cadastre – Denmark'. The new structure divides the institution into the Map Division, the Geodesy Division, the Cadastre Division, and the Administrative Division.
Inger Lise N0rregaard, The Royal Library, Map Department, K0benhavn.