Celebrating the Chinese New Year with Cartography: China Maps Available from Ball State University Libraries
The Ball State University Libraries’ GIS Research and Map Collection (GRMC) on the second floor of Bracken Library has a large collection of maps of China available for research and learning. Cartographic resources can be an excellent visual resource, and the maps and atlases in the collection include both historic and new maps of China, its provinces, and cities.
The collection includes dozens of cities in China, including new and historic maps of Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Chengdu, Nanning, and Xi’an. Many of the city maps are folded and easy to use for touring, but the collection also includes large street and topographic maps.
The collection includes maps showing precipitation, military regions, and even clothing recommendations for travel in China. An illustrated Yangzi River map includes the Three Gorges Dam.
The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency publishes updated maps of countries, and these new maps (top map above, click to enlarge) can be accessed digitally via the University Libraries’ Digital Media Repository in the Maps of the World collection. Historic maps of China are also available in the International Historic Maps collection.
The Atlas Collection also provides great resources for studying China. Environmental concerns like air pollution, soil degradation, and water quality are shown on the map (above) from the National Geographic Atlas of China published in 2007 and available from the Atlas Collection. The tourism map (above) is from the atlas, China: A Provincial Atlas published in 1995.
Atlases also offer charts and graphs depicting various topics. Defense spending and total armed forces in the People’s Liberation Army of China are shown from the State of China Atlas published in 2007. The second chart (above) from the atlas shows the number of forces and military equipment in China versus Taiwan.
Maps from the GRMC circulate for two weeks or longer. Atlases from the Atlas Collection circulate for 28 days or longer.
The complete collection of maps of China has not yet been cataloged, so visit or contact the staff of the GRMC at 765-285-1097 to discover maps not listed in the library CardCat system or for more information about any of these cartographic resources.