Map Resources: Topographic Maps

Topgraphic Maps

Topographic Maps

United States Geological Survey:

Update (December 2009):  The USGS has announced that they will no longer be producing print topo maps.  They will, however, be providing digital topo maps that are available free of charge and are available for downloading and printing.

Note:  The USGS Store Map Locator allows downloading of GeoPDFs of 1:24000, 1:100,000 and 1:250,000 maps. 

  • 1: 24,000.  (7.5 minute)  1 inch represents approximately a half mile.
    Call number sequence is I19.81.   Within each state maps are arranged alphabetically.  These maps provide the greatest detail and are sometimes called quads.  The collection concentrates on the western United States, although there are some maps from the rest of the US. 
    Finding aids: USGS State Topographic Map Lists; USGS Store; state-by-state print indexes located atop the map cabinets.
  • 1:50,000.  1 inch represents approximately .8 mile.  County maps.
    Call number sequence is I19.108.  Within each state these maps are arranged alphabetically.
    Coverage is incomplete except for Colorado.  Typographical representation varies.
    Finding aids: USGS State Topographic Map Lists; USGS Store; state-by-state print indexes located atop the map cabinets.
  • 1:63,360.  (15 minute)  1 inch represents approximately 1 mile.  Alaska.
    Call number sequence is I19.81:AK. 
    Finding aids: USGS State Topographic Map Lists; USGS Store; Alaska state print index located atop the map cabinets.
  • 1:63,360 (15 minute) and other scales.
    Consult the libguide on Historic Maps regarding these older maps.
  • 1:100,000.  1 inch represents approximately 1.6 miles.
    Call number sequence is I19.110.  Coverage is comprehensive for the US.  Within each state maps are arranged alphabetically.  Note that this map series uses the metric system.
    Finding aids: USGS State Topographic Map Lists; USGS Store; state-by-state print indexes located atop the map cabinets; flat map on map cabinets.
  • 1:250,000.  1 inch represents approximately 4 miles.
    Call number sequence is I19.98.  Coverage is comprehensive for the US. 
    Finding aids: USGS State Topographic Map Lists; USGS Store; state-by-state print indexes located atop the map cabinets.
  • 1:500,000 (1 inch represents 8 miles) and 1:1,000,000 (1 inch represents 16 miles). 
    Call number sequence is I19.102.  Arrangement is alphabetical.  These maps cover individual states; some states may require more than one map.  Contour lines are not always represented. 
    Finding aids: USGS State Topographic Map Lists; USGS Store; state-by-state print indexes located atop the map cabinets.

Other Countries: 

  • Canada.  1:250.000.  1 inch represents approximately 4 miles.
    Call number sequence is G3400--G3401.
    Finding aids: Canadian Centre for Topographic Information; print indexes located atop map cabinets.
  • Mexico.  1:250,000.  1 inch represents approximately 4 miles.
    Call number sequence is G4400's.  Contour lines represented in metric.
    Finding aids: Mexico Maps  (English language); INEGI (Spanish language); print indexes located in and atop map cabinets.  digital versions of this same map series for northern Mexico is available from the University of Texas.
  • Great Britain.  1: 250,000.  One-inch represents approximately 4 miles.
    Call number sequence is G5740's in the map cabinets.
  • Asia, Europe, and Africa: 1:250,000.  1 inch represents approximately 4 miles.  US Army Map Service.
    These older maps can be found online at the Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection.  Paper copies are not available at CSU.
  • Worldwide.  1:500,000.  Tactical Pilotage Charts (TPC).  (US Defense Mapping Agency)
    On map SHELVES at the call number sequence D5.354.  Coverage includes most countries and regions.  Elevations are indicated by colors rather than contour lines.
    Finding aids: Geomart; print index located atop the map cabinets; Catalog of US Government Publications.
  • Worldwide.  1:1,000,000.  (US Defense Mapping Agency)
    Call number sequence D5.326/7.  These maps were published in the 1960s and 1970s.  Coverage  limited mostly to Russia, Asia, Oceania, North Africa, and Brazil.  Elevations are indicated by colors rather than contour lines.

CD-ROM Resources:

  • Topo Maps of CSU Main Campus.  G4314 .F4:2C6 C65 2003.  Elec Media
    Compiled by CSU Facilities Management Department.