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A Guide to Olin Library Holdings


Ithaca 1978 topo Since the late 19th century, the United States Geological Survey has been producing topographic quadrangle maps. These detailed maps show the shape and elevation of the land, transportation networks, drainage patterns, vegetation, and buildings. These maps are used for a variety of purposes, including industrial site selection, highway planning, and recreation, and they are also a valuable source for local history.

7-1/2 Minute Quadrangles
Shelving Location
The 7-1/2 minute topographic quadrangle maps, or topo quads, for each
state are filed around the perimeter of the Map Room, starting on the
left as you enter. They are arranged alphabetically by state, and then
alphabetically by quadrangle name. Labels on each drawer show the alphabetic
range within.

Quadrangle Names
Index maps are filed at the beginning of each state's maps. Each small
square on the index map is identified by a quadrangle name. If you already
know approximately where the area is for which you want a map, simply
locate the quadrangle on the state index map. If you are looking for
a map of a particular place, but are not sure where the place is, consult
an indexed road map or use the Omni Gazetteer CD-ROM to find the place's

Date of Situation
Maps are revised or replaced periodically to keep them accurate, complete
and suitable for the intended use. The Olin Library Map Collection tries
to retain one copy of each edition of each U.S.G.S. topographic map
for the entire United States. The actual date that the air or ground
survey of the area took place will be printed at the bottom of the map,
along with other information about that map's publication history.

Historical Editions
The microfiche set Map and chart information system provides a record
of all historical editions of large- scaled topographic mapping of areas
in the United States. It is indexed both alphabetically by quadrangle
name and geographically by latitude and longitude. (MAPS G 3701 A2 1993

Brochures which explain the symbols on topographic maps are available
in the Map Room.

Intermediate & Small Scales
Two other important U.S.G.S. topographic map series are the 1:100,000-scale
and the 1:250,000- scale quadrangle maps. These are cataloged as G3700s
100 U5
and G3700s 250 U5 respectively. Index maps are filed at the
beginning of each series.

For more information:
Moffat, Riley Moore. Map Index to Topographic Quadrangles of the
United States, 1882-1940
. Santa Cruz: Western Association of Map
Libraries, 1986.
(MAPS GA 405 M68)

Thompson, Morris Mordecai. Maps For America: Cartographic Products
of the U.S. Geological Survey and Others.
Reston, VA: U.S. Geological
Survey, 1988.
(MAPS GA 405 T47 1987)

02/14/2013 - 4:40pm - bm19