Auburn University to host “Qhapac Nan: The Great Inka Trail” exhibit

AUBURN – Beginning Wednesday, March 25, Auburn University’s Ralph B. Draughon library will be home to “Qhapac Nan,” an exhibit of 80 photographs showcasing South America’s Great Inka Trail. The exhibit is presented by the office of the Consulate General of Peru in Atlanta in conjunction with the Auburn University Libraries and will be on display in the main lobby of the library until April 14.

The Inka Trail, known as the Qhapac Nan, is a complex road system that serves as an amazing example of pre-Columbian engineering. Included in this exhibition are breathtaking color photographs and engravings that recreate this marvel of man.

“This exhibit will provide the Auburn community and our students with a fascinating glimpse into Latin America’s cultural heritage,” said Bonnie MacEwan, dean of Auburn University Libraries. “We’re grateful for the opportunity to display these images and work with the Consul General of Peru.”

Constructed in the 14th and 15th centuries, the trail is a sophisticated network that included two main roads running parallel along the western coast and through the Andes Mountains complete with suspension bridges, secondary lateral roads and a system of inns called “tambos.” The more than 14,000 miles of roads served to connect the Inka government to its vast territories that included parts of present-day Peru, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Bolivia and Argentina.

The photos in the exhibit are presented in a sort of geographic order so that visitors can “follow the road.” Beginning in Cusco, Peru, the photos follow the Trail around the Andes and through the high plains, the coast and the north valleys before returning to its origin at Cusco.

The exhibit has recently been displayed in Georgia both at Atlanta’s City Hall and also at the DeKalb County Public Library in Decatur, Ga.