Martin Waldseemuller,The German geographer who christened the New World, "America!"

In 1507 this German priest/geographer created the most detailed map of the world that was known at the time which included a previously uncharted land mass lying between Europe and Asia though separated by huge ocean expanses. Waldseemuller named this land mass America on behalf of Amerigo Vespucci, the Italian navigator from whose nautical surveys his map was drawn. Just about all of the original copies of Waldseemuller's 12 panel wall map of the world were considered lost until one resurfaced in a castle in southwestern Germany in 1901. In 2001 this copy was purchased by the US Library of Congress for $10 million dollars!