The Map Collection contains over 125,000 paper maps with local, state, national, and international coverage, including topographic maps, topical maps, navigation charts, road and street maps, page-sized reference maps, and selected early 20th century maps. The Collection is adjacent to the Public Documents Collection and the Data & GIS Services Department, which provide complementary materials and services, including electronic mapping.
The collection receives or has received maps through several depository programs-- from the U.S. and the Canadian governments, the European Union, and North Carolina--and purchases other titles or receives them as gifts. Special strengths of the collection include maps of South Asia and US military maps from World War II. A collection development policy provides loose guidelines for building and managing the collection. The following list gives a sample of our holdings.
The web pages in the Table of Contents to the left lead to many online map resources.
- Topographic maps at several scales, including U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) quadrangle maps covering the United States and Canadian topographic maps covering most of Canada.
- Geological maps, including USGS folded geologic map series and some maps from U.S. state geological surveys.
- Nautical charts (primarily foreign coastlines) and aeronautical charts.
- Page-sized maps useful for illustrating reports; large maps for class presentations.
- Topographic and thematic maps dating from the Second World War, primarily representing areas occupied by Germany and Japan.
- Road maps of all U.S. states and most other countries.
- Street maps of many U.S. and international cities.
- Tourist information.
- Trail maps of National Forests and Bureau of Land Management lands.
- Indexes to maps and reference books about maps.
- Electronic maps, atlases, and trip planners.
- Geographic Information Systems (GIS) software and data (ArcGIS).
- Gazetteers, both national and international, in paper, microfiche, and CD-ROM. (See also our guide to online gazetteers.)
GIS and Electronic Maps
Our computer resources include the GIS (Geographic Information System)
as well as some spatial data to use with it. Additional spatial data may be found online form the Perkins Data Services Department
and on CD-ROM's in the Public Documents and Maps Department's federal depository collection. The library also offers map reference programs such as electronic atlases.
Some atlases are located in the Map Collection, in the reference bookshelf area, but most are in the Perkins Library Reference Department on the first floor of the library or in the Perkins/Bostock Library stacks. Atlases are searchable using the library's catalog
Please see our guide to older maps in the Perkins Library Map Collection
, although most maps produced prior to 1900 are located in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
. Some historic maps have been scanned by various institutions and the images are available on the web