The Smithsonian’s Annual Report of 1963, listing notable acquisitions and donations, included: The division of naval history acquired, from Capt. P. V. H. Weems, the Weems Memorial Library and its more »
In 16th-century Spain, manuals detailing the finer points of sailing and navigation were printed. It was the Age of Discovery and the country was establishing lucrative trade routes across the seas while expanding their colonial empire. Other nations were keen to tap into the Spaniards’ great expertise found in this literature, as there was little maritime information published elsewhere. Books were a means of developing knowledge of geography and voyaging to be competitive in trade to parts unknown. Given the economic incentives, there was a high demand for translations.