"The first of the new interactive galleries, “Exploring the Early Americas,” opens December 13, 2008, featuring the Jay I. Kislak collection, which provides a glimpse of life in the Americas before Christopher Columbus set sail. Artifacts dating from 1500 B.C. tell the history of the indigenous people of Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean through the period of European contact, exploration and settlement. The exhibition will also showcase the 1507 map by Martin Waldseemüller (the first to contain the name “America”) coupled with the cartographer’s Carta Marina—the earliest known published sea chart of the world. Paired together, these 500-year-old artifacts will offer visitors unique insight into the era of European exploration."