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Cofrin Center for Biodiversity


There is a lot of important material out there that originated before the advent of geospatial technology.

Local and Regional Archives
There are a number of local and regional organizations that archive historic maps and scientific documents as part of their mission. Agencies and organizations with administrative and construction activities in the region are another rich resource. The local office of the Army Corps of Engineers, for example, has assembled an amazing library of paper maps and air photos over the years. In addition to keeping well-informed on who has what, we need to establish channels for accessing the best possible originals. The conversion of archival material to the spatial databases used by GIS software is only as good as the quality of the original we start with. Local and regional resources that we are aware of include:

  • La Baye features a wonderful collection of documents relevant to the pre-settlement history of the region. In addition to its value as a historical reference, the site is a great destination for people who really like old maps.
  • Historical Map & Chart Collection, hosted by the Office of Coast Survey of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is a clearinghouse for historic navigation charts and related maps going back to the late 1800s.