National Parks in the Libraries

Celebrate the centennial with guides, maps, audio books, and more

Brink of the Lower Falls, Yellowstone

Brink of the Lower Falls, Yellowstone

The record numbers of visitors to our National Parks this summer reminds us that 2016 marks the centennial of the National Parks Service. Crowds will fill the Arch at Yellowstone’s northern border on Thursday, August 25; even Theodore Roosevelt will attend (and so can you, through a live stream). We know many in the MIT community study or recreate in these parks, so it seems timely to share what the Libraries can offer.

The travel section on Hayden’s second floor includes guidebooks to National Parks, such as Moon’s guide to Glacier or, closer to home, Shenandoah and the Great Smoky Mountains.

Barton, our catalog, or BartonPlus, a large database of our books and articles, lead to books like Michael Frome’s Rediscovering Our National Parks in the Spirit of John Muir and many more.

If you’ve ever wondered what’s under a park, a geological map such as the one for Yellowstone will explain. And if you’d rather just “take a hike” as it was done back in the day, visit the room of topographic maps in Hayden Library’s basement: just grab the Mt. Washington, NH, quadrangle map, check it out, and go!

One final note: We also have resources for the road or the armchair. As the miles tick by, you can listen one of the stars of the hit series, Parks and Recreation, with Amy Poehler’s Yes Please or let Ken Burns take you through 720 minutes of the parks without ever leaving home.

Most will agree our National Parks are the national treasures many proclaim. In this anniversary year, why not visit one near or far, complete with an item from the MIT Libraries item to guide you on the way? There is still time!