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* Date : 2013-11-26

'Kim Hye-jung, the Director of Hyejung Museum, seeking her path in antique maps'






Each person is destined to follow a certain path. For Kim Hye-jung, the director of the world's first and largest museum of antique maps, she has found her path in antique maps. Through the stories and secrets that remain hidden under the surface of the old, faded maps, she has found her calling, which is to find and share the truth about Korean history.

She says that the solution to the territorial dispute between Korea and Japn over Dokdo Islets can be found in antique maps, which contain the facts about the past. She believes that this diplomatic dispute can be ended by retrieving pieces of evidence within these maps.

Kim Hye-jung was instantly captivated by the appeal of antique maps after seeing an antique French map at an old book store when she was in university. It's already been 40 years since she started her collection and her museum presently houses about 260,000 maps and other historical sources. This is incomparable to the British Museum that has some 300 antique maps in its collection and USC in the U.S. which has about 140 antique maps. It is remarkable that she alone collected all these maps by investing her own time and resources.

She is also the 'mother' of countless children. She has established the Hyejung Social Welfare Corporation, which is a welfare center for the disabled on Jeju island, and has been sponsoring an orphanage in Mongolia for many years. Her hard work and dedication has gained recognition, and she won the Proud Jeju Citizen Award in 1999 and the Top Cultural Medal from the President of Mongolia in 1991. It is notable that Punsalmaagiin Ochirbat, the then-President of Mongolia, personally came to Korea to present her the award himself.

Kim Hye-jung says that dreams and history can be discovered in antique maps. Find out more about her lifelong dedication to collecting antique maps on The INNERview.
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