Author Archives: Anne Leonard

Patience and Fortitude, or Wednesday’s visit to the Map Room of the New York Public Library

This Wednesday, October 21 we meet at 10 a.m. at the New York Public Library, 42nd Street between 5th and 6th Avenues (directions). We’re visiting the Map collection there and consulting with a map librarian, Artis Q. Wright, Library Specialist II of the NYPL Maps Division.

Take the B, D, F, or M trains to 42nd Street/Bryant Park, the 7 train to 5th Avenue, or the 4, 5 ,6, 7 or S to Grand Central/42nd Street. Enter the library at the main entrance (look for the lions, Patience and Fortitude), and head to the second floor to room 215 (click to enlarge):


For this Wednesday’s visit to the NYPL Map Room, please write a pre-visit reflection blog post (see previous post and assigned reading). Please also write a reflection blog post on today’s conversation with the Urban Design studio class.

On Monday, October 26 at 10 a.m. we visit the Brooklyn Collection at the Brooklyn Public Library, Central Library at Grand Army Plaza. Take the 2 or 3 train to Grand Army Plaza or the B41 bus to Flatbush Avenue & Grand Army Plaza; the library is across Grand Army Plaza from the subway stop; the bus stops directly across Flatbush Avenue from the library’s entrance. Let’s meet at 10 just outside the Brooklyn Collection on the second floor of the library (see floorplan). The library opens at 9; if you arrive early, there’s a cafe on the ground floor.

Please get in touch with any questions you have about where we are meeting and when.

~Prof. Leonard


NYPL map room visit next week, and Wikipedia reminders

It was great to see different working groups pull together lists of primary and secondary sources on the course site. If you and your group have not yet posted a list of resources, please do so as soon as you can.

During class time next Wednesday 10/21, we’ll visit the New York Public Library map room. We will meet at 10 am in room 215 of the Schwartzman Building at 42nd Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. It’s the famous building flanked by the lions, Patience and Fortitude. In advance of our visit, please write one pre-visit reflection blog post by next Wednesday morning. Please read pages 1-5 and the conclusion of the following article and incorporate your thoughts on it into your post:

Knutzen, Matthew. “Unbinding The Atlas: Moving The NYPL Map Collection Beyond Digitization.” Journal Of Map & Geography Libraries 9.1/2 (2013): 8-24.

You’ll need to authenticate with the barcode on your City Tech ID card to access the article.

Annotated Bibliography guidelines were distributed in class. Each group will produce one annotated bibliography. The draft is due on November 9 and the final on November 11.

Wikipedia reminders: if you haven’t done so already, create a Wikipedia account and send me your username so I can add you to the WikiEdu course site; be sure to complete the online training as well. Don’t forget, the Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon takes place tomorrow (Thursday 10/15) between noon-8 pm at the Guggenheim Museum on Fifth Avenue and 88th Street. Register and help improve Wikipedia articles on women in architecture.

~Prof. Leonard

Reminder for next Wednesday

Nice work using the library’s print collection to discover books on your topics today. For next Wednesday, please choose 5 primary sources and list them in a blog post with a citation or link to the library catalog or other place you found the source. Briefly explain the relevance of each source.

The Wikipedia edit-a-thon on women and architecture takes place at the Guggenheim Museum next Thursday, October 15. Register in advance, and bring your own laptop & power cord. There will be a panel discussion at 2 pm, followed by Wikipedia editing from 3:30-8 pm. Participants will get a tour of the museum in the evening.

When you have questions about contributing to or editing Wikipedia, try Don’t forget to create your Wikipedia account and send me your username.

See you all Wednesday!

~Prof. Leonard

Wrap-up of Monday, and links to digitized archival research resources

Today we talked about Wikipedia and your blog posts responding to the assigned readings. If you did not write a blog post for today, you can still get partial credit if you post it by 10 a.m. Wednesday. See the the readings and prompt for blogging, or ask if you have questions. Don’t forget to create your Wikipedia account and send me your username by email or OpenLab message. I’ll then add you to the course site and give you the code to gain access.

We covered several resources for locating digitized primary sources: photographs, maps, manuscripts, letters, transcripts of government agency hearings, and more. Some are available through the City Tech library databases; many more are free and open for anyone to find.

Library resources (access by authenticating with the library barcode from your City Tech ID)

Public resources (free and open; search from anywhere, no login required)

Have you found others? Let us all know by leaving a comment!

~Prof. Leonard

Wrap-up of today, and reading/blogging assignment for Monday, October 5

Today we spent some time researching the topics determined during Monday’s discussion, using the data portals at as a starting point. Here are a few; add your favorites in the comments:

Department of Health/Mental Hygiene
Department of City Planning
Department of Buildings BIS | Department of Finance ACRIS lookup

American Factfinder of the US Census can be useful for finding demographic data; we’ll cover alternate ways to get this information on Monday. When you don’t know where to start, try InvestigateNYC.

Don’t forget to create your Wikipedia account and send me your username so I can add you to the Learning Places WikiEdu course site. There is a short online training tutorial that everyone should complete. On Monday, we’ll cover researching historical primary sources, including digitized manuscripts, maps, and photos, as well as library databases.

For Monday, please read/view the following articles and video and write one 100-word blog post reflecting on the readings and addressing these questions:

Can the “completely chaotic model” of Wikipedia content development be sustained in the future? Why or why not? What would help it to survive?

Wikipedia readings & video:
Can Wikipedia Survive?

Who Killed Wikipedia?

Why does Wikipedia Work?

Your blog post is due by the beginning of class on Monday, October 5. See the blogging guidelines or ask me for blogging guidance.

We meet in A540 on Wednesday, September 30

Don’t forget – we meet in A540, the library’s e-classroom, on Wednesday, September 30. That classroom provides access to computers, so come prepared to search on the topic you identified in class today (Monday). By the end of the class, you will probably have at least a few pieces of information you will be able to use for the annotated bibliography, OpenLab project, and Wikipedia article. Site report #2 is due in class and as a link on the OpenLab site.

~Prof. Leonard

Wikipedia wrap-up, and looking ahead to Monday, September 21

Today our guest lecturers, Ann Matsuuchi, Instructional Technology Librarian at LaGuardia Community College, and Richard Knipel, president of the NYC chapter of the Wikimedia Foundation, spoke to us about Wikipedia, including guidelines for creating content, creating an account, and participating in the global community of writers and editors. We looked at the Wikipedia Recent Changes Map that shows edits in real time, and they showed us Wikipedia Adventure, highly recommended for getting accustomed to editing and writing in Wikipedia. They will return on November 18 for a Wikipedia editing workshop.

On Monday, we return to the Farragut Houses for our second site visit. Meet at 10 a.m. at the corner of Hudson Avenue and Plymouth Street, and don’t forget your camera, sketchbook, pens, pencils, and clothing/footwear appropriate for the weather. [map]

Your first Site Report is due by the start of class on Monday, posted to the site and as a printed copy.

~Prof. Leonard

Blogging assignment for September 10

Today we learned about the development of downtown Brooklyn and the process and effects of urban renewal; refer to Prof. Montgomery’s Prezi if you’d like to review maps, images, or videos. In advance of our site visit on Thursday, September 10, please write one blog post of approximately 100 words in response to this prompt:

In advance of our visit to the Farragut Houses, what are your thoughts on the visit and the observation and documentation you’ll be doing?Β  What do you feel excited or nervous about? What do you imagine you’ll discover or learn about?

Please refer to the blogging guidelines if you have questions about blogging on the OpenLab. If you have not yet responded to Prof. Montgomery’s prompt about research experiences, please do so by leaving a comment on the post.

See you all tomorrow at 10 a.m. at the corner of Hudson Avenue & Plymouth Street in Vinegar Hill, Brooklyn, a 15-20 minute walk from campus [map]. Don’t forget your sketchbook/notebook, felt tip pen, soft 2B pencil, and camera (phone will be fine). Dress for the weather; rain is possible.

~Prof. Leonard