View of the exposition.

View of the Exhibition, published in the Comte-rendu du Congrès.

The organising committee was ambitious and also planned an exhibition about geography. A dedicated committee was formed and they sent out a request to geographical societies around the world to send in interesting objects.

The Exhibition would have four categories: objects of 'exotic nature', objects regarding the history and education of geography, objects regarding trade and shipping, and ethnographical objects. Besides the display of these objects, a competition was formed to create objects that would promote geagraphical education; globes, maps, atlasses, ....

This Exhibition was the first one ever in Belgium of that nature. The organisation was not simple; fearing a financial setback because of it, they tried to organise the logistics so that only one shipment per country would have to be sent. This made the practical organisation very difficult.

Exhibition Catalogue

Exhibition Catalogue

The exhibition was originally only meant for the Conference attendees; but, with the postponement the committee decided to extend it to last fourteen days and would take place at theprestigious gallery of the Royal Academy.

The Gallery was filled from floor to ceiling with maps (old and new), photographs and prints. In between there were globes and planetaria. Display cases were filled with rare books, manuscripts and other preciosa. The Exhibition showed highlights in the history of cartography, with a focus on the Low Countries.

Although it was an Exhibition with no clear topic, it was an important precedent. With the next conference, four years later in Paris, a similar exhibition was mounted. It had more than 150,000 visitors that dreamed of exotic destinations.