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An Evening with Steve Berry

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By Dr. Marguerite Ragnow, Curator, James Ford Bell Library

Join us for an evening with bestselling author and historical preservationist, Steve Berry, as he shares his writing and research process. A reception and book-signing follow the talk.

Wednesday, Feb 26, 7:00 p.m., Coffman Memorial Union Theater, University of Minnesota east bank campus.


Steve Berry is the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of "The Lincoln Myth," "The King's Deception," "The Columbus Affair," "The Jefferson Key," "The Emperor's Tomb," "The Paris Vendetta," "The Charlemagne Pursuit," "The Venetian Betrayal," "The Alexandria Link," "The Templar Legacy," "The Third Secret," "The Romanov Prophecy," and "The Amber Room."

His books have been translated into 40 languages with 17 million copies in 51 countries. They consistently appear in the top echelon of The New York Times, USA Today, and Indie bestseller lists.

History lies at the heart of every Berry novel. It's his passion, one he shares with his wife, Elizabeth, which led them to create History Matters, a foundation dedicated to historic preservation. Since 2009 Steve and Elizabeth have crossed the country to save endangered historic treasures, raising money via lectures, receptions, galas, luncheons, dinners, and their popular writers workshops. To date, more than 2,000 students have attended those workshops.

In 2012 and 2013 Steve's devotion to historic preservation was recognized by the American Library Association, which named Steve its spokesperson for National Preservation Week. Among his other honors is the Royden B. Davis Distinguished Author Award; the 2013 Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award given by Poets & Writers; the 2013 Anne Frank Human Writes Award; and the Silver Bullet, bestowed in 2013 by International Thriller Writers for his philanthropic work.

Tickets: $5 for U of M students; $10 for Friends of the U of M Libraries/Associates of the James Ford Bell Library; $15 general public.

Tickets available online at and by phone at 612-624-2345.

This event is sponsored by the University of Minnesota Libraries in celebration of the 60th anniversary of the James Ford Bell Library.

Curator to Teach Lifelong Learning Class

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bellhead-sec.pngMarguerite Ragnow, Curator of the James Ford Bell Library.

From Google Maps to those fold-out road maps that only dad seems to be able to refold, Americans have used maps to get from point A to point B for more than a century. Early untitled.pngmaps of America are not as straightforward. In fact, sometimes they deliberately misled. This short course will examine the earliest maps of America, the context in which they were produced, and how they were used.

Participants in this course will learn the real history behind the publicity and hype, see the actual maps, and be encouraged to draw their own conclusions about what maps can and cannot tell us about America's early history.

Held at the Bell Library, a premier repository of rare books, maps, and manuscripts, this course offers participants the opportunity to examine and discuss rare maps of America firsthand, as well as to gain insight into how the country was mapped and how maps were used in the pre-modern world. Marguerite Ragnow, curator of the collection, will provide context for each of the maps through informal lecture and presentation.

Course dates and time: Nov. 11, 18, 25, Dec. 2, from 7-9 pm

Please use these links to get more information or to register for the class.

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