The New York Map Society had its start at the end of 1977, an idea of Werner Elias, who was a student of travel guides, and an
expert on postal history and old postal routes. He was a frequent visitor to the New York Public Library’s Map Division, where the
curator, Gerald L. Alexander, the assistant curator, Alice Hudson, and Sy Amkraut, supported the idea of a map society.
An organizational meeting was held on January 7, 1978, at the Map Division — attendees: Werner Elias, Gerald Alexander, Alice
Hudson, Sidney Horenstein of the American Museum of Natural History, Michael Cohen, Howard Welsh, Sy Amkraut, Eugene
Grossman and Abbot Lutz.
By-Laws consisting of 13 articles were adopted in Spring 1984. The 1987 membership directory listed 51 members.
In 1988, at the end of the society’s first decade, with monthly meetings continuing on the first Saturday of each month at the
American Museum of Natural History, and with the main branch of the New York Public Library as its mailing address, the society’s
president, Sy Amkraut, authorized Alice Hudson to create a flyer summarizing ten years of progress.
Steve is a map and history enthusiast with cartographic interests in The Age of Discovery, Maps of Spain (where he lived for five years), Colonial America, and early New York City. He is a member of the Philip Lee Phillips Society at The Library of Congress, The Washington Map Society, and The International Map Collector’s Society (IMCoS). In 2023 Steve was named a Fellow of The Royal Geographical Society in London. Steve is Chief Campus Operations Officer at Avenues: The World School, an organization that is developing a system of premium, private K-12 schools emphasizing language fluency and global preparedness in the world’s innovation hubs (New York, Sao Paulo, London, Shenzhen, Silicon Valley, etc.). Prior to joining Avenues, Steve worked as an executive in finance, strategy, and operations in the fashion, media, and financial industries with organizations such as Ralph Lauren, PepsiCo, Scripps Networks (now Discovery), and Price Waterhouse. Steve holds a B.S. in Management from the Krannert School of Management at Purdue University and an MBA from the Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis.
Laura Ten Eyck
Laura Ten Eyck grew up in Toronto, Canada in a municipality of Lake Ontario called Mimico. She studied visual art at York University with a concentration in print-making, and attended the Graduate Program in Visual Arts at New York University. Her interest in maps began on the Thorong La pass in Nepal during a solo trek when the wind took her only map. A one-year apprenticeship with Miss Ruth Shevin in the map room at the Argosy Book Store in Manhattan furthered her passion about mapping and all the forms it takes. Ten Eyck is the director of the gallery at the Argosy Book Store in New York City, an appraiser of Posters & Prints on The Antiques Roadshow, and has appeared on CBS Sunday morning. She knew it was her destiny to live in NYC when she discovered, through rare maps, Coenraedt Ten Eyck (her relative) received two WIC (Dutch West India Company) land grants in lower Manhattan. She lives in Greenpoint Brooklyn with her family.
Stephen M Banker
Stephen Banker has been Treasurer of The New York Map Society since 2015. Steve developed an affinity for old maps as a child and has been collecting for over 35 years. His interest is primarily in maps from the 1400’s through the 1600’s, with a focus on world maps, maps of the Northeast U.S., maps of the Holy Land and any other maps with a particular beauty or historical interest. He is a member of three other map societies. Steve has developed educational programs for Nursery School and Elementary School students, utilizing maps to explore science, history, geology, geography, humor, art and many other disciplines. Steve is also involved with other not-for-profit organizations: for 26 years he was a Trustee and volunteer with The Educational Alliance, a 125-year-old multi-generational community service organization with over 15 facilities on the Lower East Side and East Village, serving over 50,000 New Yorkers every year; he remains an Honorary Trustee. He also serves as President of The Westchester Chordsmen, one of the leading barbershop choruses in the country, where he sings bass. Steve has retired from his partnership in the international law firm, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP, where he practiced for 34 years, specializing in mergers and acquisitions. He has a B.A. from Cornell University and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.
In 2010 Andrew retired from decades as a consumer and business data/processing consultant — most recently from Dun & Bradstreet, where he was awarded with patents for domestic and global address maintenance. Prior to that, he spent 13 years in publishing, becoming Editor-in-Chief and then Associate Publisher of multiple tabloid magazines. He began collecting antique maps in 1988 and built the first version of his site “LithuanianMaps.com” — which now has over 4,000 images and 65 pages — in 2008. He was invited to become Secretary of the New York Map Society in September 2014, and, a year later, also became its webmaster. He now also partners with Steve Hanon and Laura Ten Eyck in society program development. His map-related presentations include “The Influence of Maps on Society and Contemporary Art,” at Seton Hall University in November 2013, and “How Maps and Map Collecting Helped an Immigrant Find His Place in the World,” given February 2016 at the New York Public Library, and again in February 2017 at the Lithuanian Consulate in New York. The consulate also hosted a two-month exhibition of his maps of the historic Lithuanian area in 2017: “300+ Years of Lithuania on Maps: 1552 – 1862.“ Andrew’s B.A. in Biological Illustration from City College, New York, was leveraged only once: for a 1974 college biology textbook, for which he drew all the illustrations and wrote three chapters.