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Professor Penck’s Pupils

Professor Penck’s Pupils

(p.11) Chapter One Professor Penck’s Pupils
Map Men
Steven Seegel
University of Chicago Press

The chapter introduces, formally, the main mapmen: Albrecht Penck of Saxony, Eugeniusz Mikolaj Romer of West Galicia in Poland, Stepan L’vovych Rudnyts’kyi of Eastern Galicia in Ukraine, Isaiah Bowman of Ontario, and Count Teleki de Szek of Transylvania. The chapter provides brief genealogies of the mapmen’s families, for their pursuits in geography were tied closely to feelings of national legacy. Romer, for example, sought to establish Polish geography as a dominant science that confirmed the legacy and influence of the Poles on European land or Count Teleki who used geography to campaign for Transylvania’s independent statehood. All of the men reckoned with imperial powers and colonial aspirations under the guise of establishing their homeland’s geography as a transnational science that broke borders while establishing the strength and dignity of their homelands. The chapter gives special attention to how academic pursuits and marriages affected the class status of the mapmen. It also gives further detail about the men’s first meeting on an AGS expedition through the continental United States and to Alaska in 1912.

Keywords:   American Geographical Society, Poland, Transylvania, early modernity, geography

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