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Collections » Map Collection » World and Celestial Maps

World and Celestial Maps

Recent and historic world maps in the Map Collection depict the world and its hemispheres, continents, regions, countries and local areas, including some major cities. Thematic world maps cover the physical sciences, biogeography, human and cultural geology, economics, mines and mineral resources, agriculture, forests, commerce, time zones, transportation, and history.  Historic world maps and atlases demonstrate the changes in boundaries, names, and territories over time.  Topographic world map series of varying scales provide detailed information on a number of regions and countries, including the AMS 1:1,000,000 world series.

WWII maps form an extensive subcollection of detailed maps depicting the theater of war in Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific during the 1930's and 1940's.  These maps illustrate topography, strategic areas, transportation, structures, territorial claims and city plans from both Allied and Axis sources.

Celestial maps and atlases in the Map Collection range from the universe, galaxy and solar system to Mars and the Moon.  Maps of Mars and the Moon include space exploration photos and a photomosaic series of the Martian surface.

Most of the world and celestial maps in the Collection are not entered in the Library's online catalog, but a limited number can be found there with a subject search for  "world maps", "moon maps". 

Additional celestial and world map resources:


David Rumsey Historical Map Collection database

GIS Data Depot.  Free GIS data.

The Harvard Geospatial Library

USGS Global Visualization Viewer. Landsat 7 Browser

The Living Earth.  Live satellite images.

Map History.  Images of early maps

NASA distributed Active Archive Center. From NASA's Earth Observing System.

Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library

Perry-Castenada Map Collection

United Nations Cartographic Section.  Maps of regions, countries, themes, and peacekeeping operations.

USGS Image Collections. Includes images of environmental change.

World Factbook Reference Maps. CIA


Chandra X-Ray Observatory Photo Album

Hubble Heritage Information Center.  Hubble space images.

Orchard Hill Observatory, University of Massachusetts Amherst



Last Edited: 23 December 2014