Horizontal moveable map shelving.

map shelving stacks

I was involved in designing a system of map shelving units that were custom-manufactured for our map collection applications.  Seven vertical stacks of 30 shelves each provided low-cost storage for the majority of the approximately 20,000 maps which were part of the collection.  Five of the seven stacks are shown along the right side of the above picture, and at least two of the horizontal map drawers are partially withdrawn from the frame to show how the drawers could be moved for routine map maintenance.  I published the design plans in the following article:

Gerencher, Joseph J., Jr., 1985, "An Inexpensive Map Storage Facility," Bulletin of Special Libraries Association, Geography and Map Division, No. 141, p. 2 - 6.

The abstract from the article explains some of the construction:
A set of 210 moveable, horizontal shelves have been inexpensively constructed, supplementing three spring-compressor vertical map cases, to provide for the initial ordering and ultimate maintenance of the DMA map depository at Moravian College.   Design elements which minimize cost have been utilized so that the 34 inch by 26 inch metal shelves may be moved easily within the frame even when fully loaded with maps.   The entire facility, now serving as a limited USGS depository as well, is housed in a library room that measures approximately 10 feet by 17 feet.

Two years after the expansion of the library, the continued need for space caused Moravian to discontinue participation in the DMA map depository program and to disperse the collection and the shelves.  The three vertical map cases, two of which are shown on the left side of the above picture, were moved to the Earth Science laboratory, and some portions of the collection were retained within them.  One of the moveable horizontal stacks was retained by the library and currently is used for maintaining selected USGS topographic map sheets of the area surrounding eastern Pennsylvania.   The other six custom-made horizontal stacks and the vast majority of the collection was donated to the library of the Pennsylvania State University, where they currently reside.

The photograph above shows the map shelving units within the map room of the main library at the Pennsylvania State University at University Park, PA.  I appear in the photograph and am leaning on one of the shelves, which has been partially withdrawn from the frame.

This is another view of the map shelving units, now at the Penn State main library.

This shows the map shelving units, now at the Penn State main library.