Thursday, April 04, 2013

New Historic Map Collections Available from Ball State University Libraries

The Ball State University Libraries’ Digital Media Repository (DMR) provides online access to a broad range of digitized primary source materials, including artwork, architectural drawings, films and video, oral histories, photographs, publications, and cartographic resources.  The GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) has provided more maps for four new collections in the DMR.

The International Historic Maps digital collection includes 29 assorted maps from around the world—cities, countries, and former countries—dating back to the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century available from the Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection.  This eclectic collection includes a 1911 map of Cuba published by the War Department and an 1867 map of the Ottoman Empire (shown above).

The United States Transportation Maps digital collection includes city, county, and state road maps and steam railroad maps.  The 33 maps range in date from the middle to late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century.  The maps include maps listed as “new” railroad maps published in 1878.  A unique map “Skeleton Map of the Union Pacific Railway” includes illustrations of the new railroad with an invitation to the former Grand Army of the Republic to take the railroad to their reunion.

The United States Topographic Maps digital collection includes county, state, regional and national maps with contour lines and other topographic features dating back to the nineteenth century.  Many of these 24 maps were published by the United States Geological Survey and can provide historic development information for researchers.

The United States Soil Maps digital collection provides a wide array of soil maps of counties and states from around the United States.  The 31 maps in this collection identify the various soil types or properties for a particular area of research.  The collection also includes geological maps and land classification maps from around the United States. The maps date back to the nineteenth century, but most of the maps are valuable research tools today since many of the soil properties remain unchanged over time.

For more information about the Digital Media Repository, please contact the Archives and Special Collections at 765-285-5078.  For more information about the maps, please contact the GRMC at 765-285-1097.

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