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Research Guides

Map Resources

Frequently Requested Materials

Aerial Photography

The collection includes modern and historical aerial photographs and satellite imagery of the Brazos County area. The 1940's Aerials of Brazos County can be viewed online. Aerial photography of Austin, Dallas, Houston, and the U.S./Mexico border are also held in the collection. 

Base/Outline Maps

We hold the Facts on File’s Historical Maps on File and Geography on File, both of which are freely available to photocopy.  Outline maps of the world and US can be found at About.com.

Flood Insurance Rate Maps from FEMA

These include Texas communities that are in the Flood Insurance Program. Flood insurance maps are available in physical and scanned copies as well as GIS files. Some are available online through the FEMA Flood Map Service Portal.

Geological Maps

The collection contains geologic maps on every state, and most countries, with extensive coverage of Texas. The library contains the complete set of the Geologic Atlas of Texas in paper. We also hold maps from many state geologic surveys.

The library holds the complete run of the Geologic Atlas of the United States, created by the USGS during the late 19th and middle 20th centuries. This set consists of 227 folio volumes, each including topographic and geologic maps and sections of selected geographic areas in the United States, together with a descriptive text, charts and photographs. Digitized copies are available in the library's repository.

Historical Maps

We have both originals and reproductions of historic maps representing Texas, the United States and the world. Among our reprint collections are maps from the Historic Urban Plans collection.  To find these maps in the catalog, search Historic Urban Plans (Firm).  You may also view historic maps online at the Library of Congress’ American Memory and at the David Rumsey Collection.

Imaginary Places Collection

The collection includes maps of imaginary places and ideas, including Middle Earth, Narnia, and Westeros. These maps can be found by searching LibCat with the keyword "Maps of Imaginary Places Collection."

Nautical/Aeronautical/Celestial Charts

We collect the following government produced series: TPC (Tactical Pilotage Charts); ONC (Operational Navigational Charts); GNC (Global Navigational Charts) and Sectional Aeronautical Charts.  We also have a number of world nautical charts and celestial charts.  Digital version of NOAA's Nautical charts can be found on their On-Line Chart Viewer

Soil Surveys

We hold copies of the county soil surveys published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Many of these surveys are also available online through the USDA.

Thematic Maps

Among the many topics in our collection are social or demographic maps, as well as the topics of ecology, land use, climate data, and economic data.

Topographic maps

Maps & GIS has an extensive collection of United States Geological Survey 7.5 Minute Topographic Series (1:24,000 scale).  We also have topographic maps at 1:50,000, 1:100,000, and 1:250,000 scale for many parts of the United States.  Our topographic maps cover various years, some going back to the 19th century.  The 7.5-minute map series was officially completed in 1992, and the program has recently been replaced by The National Map

The collection also includes topographic maps from numerous countries and regions around the world. 

Travel Maps, City Maps

We have street maps for cites and regions, locally and around the world. We also have maps and guides of the US National Parks. The travel guide books, including those from Lonely Planet, Fodor's and other publishers, are found in the general collections and can be searched in LibCat with the place of interest and keyword "description and travel guidebooks."

Atlases

We have a substantial collection of national atlases from all over the world. 

  • Historical Atlases

We have both originals and reproductions of historic atlases representing Texas, the United States and the world. Among our reprint collections are atlases reproduced by the British Museum, the United States Government, and the Biblioteca Nacional de Hungría.

  • Imaginary Places Collection

The collection includes atlases of imaginary places and ideas, including Dragonlance, Middle Earth, and Pern. These atlases can be found by searching LibCat with the keyword "Maps of Imaginary Places Collection."

  • Thematic Atlases

Among the many topics in our collection are social or demographic atlases, as well as the topics of ecology, land use, climate data, economic data, and military and warfare.

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General Reference Resources

We maintain a significant reference collection containing items such as, The New Handbook of Texas, Texas Almanac, Texas Gazetteer, National Gazetteer of the United States, Omni Gazetteer, Guide to USGS Publications, the World Almanac, and the Statistical Abstract of the U.S.  We also have many GIS manuals and books from ESRI.

Place Names & Gazetteers

We hold gazetteers of place names approved by the U.S. Board on Geographic Names.  Also, see the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) on the web for place names within the US and its territories.  Information about foreign geographic feature names can be obtained from the GEOnet Names Server (GNS).

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