Definitions of Cartography

Geographer's Craft
Lots of great definitions on cartographic communication.

Gilbert Grosvenor
Definition on cartography by Gilbert Grosvenor (National Geographic Society).

Infoplease Dictionary
Dictionary definition of Cartography.

John Krygier
Is cartography an art or science? The dilemma we all face in defining cartography.

Famous Cartographers or Just Famous?








Ptolomy (Also, try here)

Map Types

-Thematic Maps-

Interactive Map on 'Deaths in Nebraska'
Great example of an interactive map showing causes of death in Nebraska.

The Electronic Map Library
Atlases from around the United States.

United States Census Bureau Map Gallery
Sample maps designed by the US Census Bureau.

University of Missouri - Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis Thematic Maps
Great examples of thematic maps of Missouri.

-Reference Maps-

Altapedia Online
Commercial set of reference maps from around the globe.

Boston West Group's Map Gallery
Set of reference maps from different regions of the United States.

Map Graphics' Map Gallery
Commercial set of unique reference maps.

Maps of Montana
Create your own reference maps of Montana.

WorldAtlas.Com Maps
Set of world reference maps.

Data Sets for Cartography Projects

Alaska National Parks
ARC/INFO export files and ArcView shapefiles for the National Parks of Alaska

Antarctica Digital Database
Vector-based GIS data for the continent of Antarctica. In ARC/INFO export files.

Austin, Texas GIS
GIS data sets developed by the City of Austin's Infrastructure Support Services Department. In ArcView shapefiles. Excellent data set.

Canadian Geospatial Data Infrastructure
Numerous data sets on Canada.

Center for International Earth Science Information Network
Numerous data sets on United States and World variables.

Chicago GIS Data
ArcView shapefiles for data about Chi-town.

Coastline Extractor
Extract coastline segments bounded by a specified latitude/longitude range. Output formats include Mapgen files, ARC/INFO Ungenerate files, Matlab files, and Splus files.

Digital Chart of the World Data Server
ARC/INFO export files and ArcView shapefiles for the Digital Chart of the World. Hosted by Pennsylvania State University.

ESRI's ArcData On-Line
ArcView shapefiles available on-line for numerous data sources and different regions around the globe.

ESRI's Data Hound
Search the ESRI site for various data sets.

Georgia River Data
ARC/INFO export files for the five main rivers in Georgia.

GeoGratis maintains the base map data for Canada. This data is available in ARC/INFO export and AutoCad dxf and dwg files.

Geological Maps of California and Nevada
ARC/INFO export files and ArcView shapefiles for various geological maps of California and Nevada.

Geological Maps of Utah
ArcView shapefiles for various geological maps of Utah.

Geological Symbol Sets for ARC/INFO
Excellent ARC/INFO symbol set for geology, based on USGS standard symbols.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument GIS
ARC/INFO export files of various physical and cultural features around the Monument at varying scales of 1:24,000, 1:100,000 and 1:250,000.

Hawaii Statewide GIS
ARC/INFO export files and ArcView shapefiles for various cultural, physical and land cover data sets for Hawaii.

Hubbard Brook Ecosystem Study GIS Coverages
ARC/INFO export files for the data sets collected about Hubbard Brook, New Hampshire

Illinois Natural Resources Geospatial Data
ARC/INFO export files for the natural resources of Illinois.

MapData Online: Free and Sample Data Sets
MapInfo MIF files and ArcView shapefiles for seleted data sets.

Montana State Library Natural Resources Data
ARC/INFO export files and ArcView shapefiles for the natural resources of Montana.

National Grasslands
Maps for the National Grasslands of the United States. Selected data sets are provided by the National Wetlands Inventory, US Bureau of the Census, and US Geological Survey.

1995 TIGER Data
1995 TIGER Files in ArcView shapefiles. Located at the ESRI ArcData On-Line site. A fantastic resource, provided at no cost by ESRI.

North Central Texas Council of Governments
GIS data sets for 16 counties in north-central Texas. Data in ARC/INFO export files, ArcView shapefiles, Intergraph DGN files, and AutoCad DXF files.

Northampton County, Virginia GIS
ARC/INFO export files for the Virginia Coast Reserve of the Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) program.

Nova Scotia Minerals and Energy Branch
GIS data sets for mineral and energy resources in Nova Scotia. Data in ARC/INFO export files and AutoCad DXF files.

Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis - University of Missouri
A nice resource for socio-economic information and data on Missouri.

Pacific Northwest Stream Net
StreamNet is a cooperative venture of the Pacific Northwest's fish and wildlife agencies and tribes. They provide data and data services in support of the region's Fish and Wildlife Program and other efforts to preserve and restore the region's aquatic resources.

Pennsylvania Spatial Data Access
"The Pennsylvania Spatial Data Access system (PASDA) is Pennsylvania's node on the National Spatial Data Infrastructure. PASDA was developed as a service to the citizens, government, and businesses of PA by the Pennsylvania State University with funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection."

San Diego Association of Governments
ARC/INFO export files for demographic and economic data sets of San Diego. A wonderful site.

Texas Natural Resources Information System
Awesome site. The Texas Natural Resources Information System distributes GIS and other geospatial data from a variety of sources, including federal, state and local government agencies.

United States Geological Survey - Cartographic Data
USGS cartpgraphic data on-line. Lots of good stuff.

Vermont Agency of Transportation
ArcView shapefiles containing geodetic control for the State of Vermont.

University of Virginia - Geospatial and Statistical Data Center
A great site for data sets of Virginia in ARC/INFO export files.

University of Wyoming Spatial Data and Visualization Center
A great site for data sets of Wyoming in ARC/INFO export files and ArcView shapefiles.

Water Resources GIS
This site serves as a node of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) for finding and accessing USGS spatial data related to water resources.

World Resources Institute's Data Sets
WRI provides global data sets on the Earth and its inhabitants.

Coordinate Converters

Convert is a freeware conversion programs for distance, area, volume and so much more. A must utility.

Excellent conversion utility for UTM, SPC, and GRS data based upon North American Datum.

Degrees-Minutes-Seconds Converter
Mentor Software freebie that works great. Windows-based program.

Degrees-Minutes-Seconds To Transverse Mercator Converter
Nice web converter to get your geography into UTM coordinates.

National Geodetic Survey PC Software
A plethora of freeware conversion utilities provided by the National Geodetic Survey. A must visit for cartographers and surveyors.

NIMAMUSE is a self-contained set of computer programs and computer utilities designed to work with NIMA MC&G data and information.

University Map Libraries

Brock University Map Library
The Brock University Map Library "provides access to over 50,000 map sheets, 16,000 aerial photographs and more than 700 atlases."

Harvard University Map Library.
Lots of good links and valuable resources.

Pennsylvania State University Map Library
A terrific place to find information on all aspects of cartography.

University of California at Berkeley - Earth Sciences & Map Library
The UC-Berkeley Library "provides assistance in using the various Online Catalog Systems, connecting to various databases, locating citations, and materials, using CD-ROMs, and assisting with spatial analysis and map creation on the GIS workstations."

University of California at San Diego - Maps & Spatial Data Library
A map library that supports many forms of research.

University of Chicago Map Library
The University of Chicago Map Collection has "particularly strong holdings in three areas: (1) topographic maps; (2) urban maps; and (3) geology maps."

University of Michigan Map Library
The University of Michigan Map Library "contains a wide array of cartographic materials, including maps, atlases, gazetteers, and geographical dictionaries, and is also a campus resource center for Gegraphic Information Systems (GIS)."

University of Minnesota at Twin Cities - John R. Borchert Map Library
"In a period of intellectual flux, when geography seems tempted to follow nongeographical sirens of transient glamour, John Borchert always manages to anchor the discipline's sense of identity on the rock of cartographic information."

University of Southern Maine at Portland - Osher Map Library
"The Osher Map Library and Smith Center for Cartographic Education is the only separately established rare map library in northern New England. The Smith and Osher collections comprise fine examples of original maps, atlases, geographies, and globes spanning the years from 1475 to the present."

University of Texas at Austin - Perry-Castañeda Map Library
One of the best places on the Internet for digital maps.

Cartography 'Starting Points'


A Maps and Graphics Company
Commercial entity distributing maps from around the globe.

Adventurous Traveler Bookstore
Commercial entity distributing maps from around the globe.

Africa Library
Maps, data, and other resources on Africa.

AGIS Mapping Software
Commercial mapping software package.

ALLM Systems & Marketing
Producers of the Global Gazetteer, ALLM Systems & Marketing provides gazetteer and related geodata products.

Atlas of Florida Vascular Plants
Web site for information on Florida's vascular plants. Complete atlas available on CD-ROM for $40.00.


Barry Lawrence Ruderman's Old Historic Maps & Prints
Featuring fine and rare antique maps and atlases from the 16th to 19th centuries.

Interesting mapping application and software for botanical gardens and parks.

Blue Marble Geographics
Commercial vendor for computer mapping utilities. Some good freeware products as well.

Boston West Group
Commercial supplier of GPS add-ons and equipment.

Bright Spot Maps
Bathymetric maps of Michigan and Indiana Lakes.

British Cartographic Society
The British Cartographic Society is a dynamic association of individuals and organizations dedicated to exploring and developing the world of maps.


Caliper Corporation
Commercial vendor for numerous mapping software packages.

Canadian Active Control System for GPS
Geodetic survey information for Canada.

Cartographic Images
Historical maps and good links to other cartography sites.

Cartographic Links for Botanists
Links to Internet sites with on-line plant distribution maps, and information on plant distribution mapping projects.

Cartographica Helvetica - Journal On The History Of Cartography
German journal dedicated to the history of cartography.

Consulting group for cartographic applications.

Cartography, Inc.
Consulting group for cartographic applications.

Casual Cartographer
On-line journal on cartography. Subscribe at the web site.

Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research
CGRER promotes interdisciplinary efforts that focus on the multiple aspects of global environmental change, including the regional effects on natural ecosystems, environments, and resources, and on human health, culture and social systems. Center membership is composed of interested faculty members at any of Iowa's colleges and universities.

Center for International Earth Science Information Network
A non-profit, non-governmental organization to provide information that would help scientists, decision-makers, and the public better understand their changing world.

The Center for Mapping at Ohio State University
Interdisciplinary research center focused on spatial data technologies.

Centre for Topographic Information (Canada)
Responsible for the acquisition, management and dissemination of topographic information for the Canadian landmass.

Cervera Centre
A nice write-up on the history of cartography. Translation to English is somewaht choppy, but nonetheless understandable.

Chapel Mapping
Commercial vendor of mapping information for utilities.

ChartWrite develops software packages that integrate spatial data and management information with focus on tailored applications for agriculture, property and land management.

Chicago Map Corporation
Consulting group for cartographic applications.

Cleveland Cartography
Information about historical and contemporary maps and map-related happenings in and about Cleveland.

Color Landform Atlas of the United States
Nice set of maps for the United States.

ComGrafix, Inc.
Mapping software products.

Constraint-Based Continuous Cartogram Method
Examples of cartograms and their generation.

Crampton's Commercial Cartography Resources
Excellent set of links on commercial cartography resources provided by Jeremy Crampton.

Crampton's Non-commercial Cartography Resources
Excellent set of links on non-commercial cartography resources provided by Jeremy Crampton.

Creating Cartograms with Arcview GIS
Examples of cartograms created in ArcView by Charles Jackel.

CTI Cartography
Set of cartography links, primarily for the United Kingdom.

Cynthia Brewer: Color Representation of Aspect and Slope
Dr. Cynthia Brewer's helpful hints to selecting colors for mapping aspect and slope of a terrain.

Cynthia Brewer: Color Use Guidelines for Mapping and Visualization
Dr. Cynthia Brewer's helpful hints to selecting colors for thematic mapping.

Cynthia Brewer: Guidelines for Selecting Colors for Diverging Schemes on Maps
Dr. Cynthia Brewer's helpful hints to selecting colors for diverging schemes.


Delorme Mapping
Leading commercial vendor in cartography and mapping software.

Digital Census Atlas for Niagara, Canada (1991)
On-line atlas for Niagara, Canada with lots of plots and maps.

Digital Nautical Chart
NIMA's Digital Nautical Chart is a product that NIMA is distributing free with the hope of further development from the commercial sector.

DPLOT Software
Excellent freeware plotting software provided by the US Army Engineer Waterway Station.

Dreamline Cartography
Company Specializing in the design and production of thematic, historical, street, terrain and travel maps for use in both traditional and internet publishing.


Earth Information Systems Corporation
EISYS Corp. is a geographic information technologies company serving a global clientele.

Earth Science Corps
The Earth Science Corps (ESC) is a field component of the USGS Volunteer for Science Program where volunteers may participate in USGS projects. USGS has an ongoing map annotation project where volunteers collect new information for use in the National Mapping Program.

A very cool site showing environmental satellite images of changes on the Earth.

Consulting group for cartographic and remote sensing applications.

EarthRise World Map
Great selection of Space Shuttle photography from all over the world. Database contains a good collection of photographs for environmental studies.

Elstead Maps
Order your specialty maps by mail from this company in the United Kingdom.

EPA's Surf Your Watershed
Data and maps on local watersheds throughout the United States.

Equator Graphics, Inc.
Creators and distributors of production-quality maps.

The leader in developing and distributing mapping software for environmental studies.

Etak, Inc.
Software developer and distributor of street maps and navigation systems.


Fifty States and Capitals
Maps and facts about the 50 states and capitals.

Flowmap software allows for creation of flow map diagrams.

This site contains a document describing the history of Autodesk, Inc. by John Walker (founder and former CEO). Lots of other cool things as well. Worth the visit.


Galaxy of Maps
On-line distributor of maps, atlases, and books.

Garmin GPS
Garmin GPS and its products.

Generic Mapping Tools for Unix
For all you UNIX lovers, this is the site for you.

GeoCart is a software product that generates different map projections. For the Macintosh only.

Geodetic Datums
An excellent summary of datums provided by the Geographer's Craft.

Geodetic Survey of Canada
Geodetic Survey is responsible for providing and maintaining the national spatial reference system, standards and national networks of gravity and survey control points for Canada.

Geographer's Craft Project
Great set of lectures and labs on cartography. The source for learning cartography from a free web site.

Geographic Resources Analysis Support System
Freeware UNIX-based GIS software package, now hosted by Baylor University. Now ported to Windows, which there is a small charge for.

Geography and Maps: An Illustrated Guide
A wonderful walk-through on maps and atlases and everything else a Cartographer does. A great site to visit.

An internet-based subject gateway to scholarly relevant information in the Earth Sciences.

Geometry of the Sphere
Website on the basic geometry of a sphere. Author is John C. Polking of Rice University.

Geoscape International
Commercial mapping sources and software.

Gittings' Digital Elevation Data Catalog
Text document on available DEM sources.

Graphical Locator
A great utility for finding basic georeferencing data on specific locations.

Great Circle Distance Calculator
This system computes the flight distance between any two points on the Earth.

Great Globe Gallery
An awesome source for visualizing different map projections, DEMs, etc.

Green Map System
Maps of environmental areas in urban complexes.


Hagstrom Map
Commercial map sources.

The History of Cartography Project
Information on ordering this six-volume set generated by the folks at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Hometown USA
Maps and information about places in the United States.

How Far Is It?
Provides the longitude and latitude of two locations, and then provides the distance between them.


Interactive map of California showing variation in topography and other physical variables.

Information Center for the Environment at UC-Davis
Project information and data sets from the Information Center for the Environment at the University of California, Davis.

International Earth Rotation Service
All there is to know about the Earth's rotation.

International GPS Service for Geodynamics
Information on the international standards set for GPS.

ITA Quick Maps
Obtain downloadable maps, quickly, from Information Technology Associates. Many are past CIA graphics.




Library of Congress' Geography and Map Reading Room
The Geography and Map Division has custody of the largest and most comprehensive cartographic collection in the world, with collections numbering over 4.5 million maps including 60,000 atlases, 6,000 reference works, numerous globes and plastic relief models, and a large number of cartographic material in other formats, including electronic.


Making Maps Easy To Read
A research project looking at cartographic communication.

Have a blast and create locator maps on the web. A great resource when you want to travel and don't have time for AAA.

DOS-based mapping program that does some neat tricks. Dirt cheap as well, with a shareware version to boot.

Intrasearch's on-line catalog of digital map data.

Mapping Solutions
Consultant supplying business-based mapping solutions. Has an on-line map search for breweries and steak houses in the Great Lakes region.

Mapping Standards
USGS geospatial standards for mapping.

Mapping Technologies International, Inc.
Commercial vendor of mapping information.

A great resource when you want to travel and don't have time for AAA.

Commercial vendor of mapping information.

Mapping software products by Caliper.

Map Graphics
Canadian outfit that creates map products for advertising.

Map Guide
Excellent resource for links to on-line Cartography sites.

Map History by Tony Campbell
Great resources to find historical map collections.

Commercial software vendor for mapping applications.

Map Projection Home Page
A fantastic resource on projections and their history.

Need a map for travel, whether by boat, sea, or land, this is a place to look.

Maps On Us
Yellow pages linked to locator maps. A great finder of business locations.

Maps Unlimited
Cartographic consulting firm.

Mentor Software, Inc.
Mentor Software provides mapping professionals the tools needed to efficiently build accurate and complete geographic databases.

An excellent software package for displaying map projections. Link is to the ftp site for the software. It is freeware for the PC (DOS and Windows) and works well. An nice package for students just learning cartography.

Mining Company: Cartography and Understanding Maps
Nice list of resources on cartography provided by the Mining Company.

Missing Maps
Provider of rare and unique maps. Place to look when you can't find your study area maps anywhere else.


National Atlas of Canada
Learn about the geography and resources of Canada. An excellent site with plenty of free data sets and maps of Canada.

National Geodetic Survey
Home site of the National Geodetic Survey.

National Geodetic Survey - Continuously Operating Reference Station (CORS) GPS Data
NGS coordinates a network of continuously operating reference stations (CORS) that provide Global Positioning System (GPS) carrier phase and code range measurements in support of 3-dimensional positioning activities.

National Geodetic Survey - GPS Precise Orbits
Orbital information on GPS satellites is provided at this site.

National Geodetic Survey - Related Geodetic Resources
Nice set of links on geodetic information and resources.

National Imagery and Mapping Agency
The former Defense Mapping Agency. Provides mapping and imagery information to civilian and military sectors.

National Imagery and Mapping Agency: Geodesy and Geophysics Publications
Publications (in Adobe Acrobat) for various NIMA geodesy applications and products.

National Imagery and Mapping Agency: Geospatial Standards and Specifications
Data specifications for various NIMA products.

National Mapping Division
Mapping products and services provided by the United States government. The National Mapping Division is part of the United States Geological Survey.

National Park Service
Information about the National Parks of the United States.

National Weather Service
Excellent source for meteorological maps and data.

Natural Resources Canada
Get to know Canada and its natural resources.

Nederlands Kartografisch Switchboard
Explore how cartography is practiced in the Netherlands. In Dutch.


Object-Orientation Links
The place to go to find out information about object-orientated mapping.

Ontario's Compass Camera
Watch traffic pass you by on-line. Digital cameras located along the highway system throughout Ontario, Canada.

Ordnance Survey
The Ordinance Survey is Great Britian's National Mapping Agency. Information on Great Britian's maps and cartographic data can be obtained here.


Peters Projection
All there is to know about the controversial Peters projection.

Pierssen Publishing
Publishers of Point-Line-Poly, a journal that provides technical assistance on GIS issues. This site offers an abundance of resources and add-ons for IDRISI, ARC/INFO, and ArcView.

Plot-It Software
Plotting software that is very useful for graphing data.

Precision Cartographics
Commericial provider of maps and mapping systems.



Reference Ellipsoids and Geodetic Datum Transformation Parameters (Local to WGS-84)
Very helpful information about ellipsoids and datums if you are going to re-project data.


Small Blue Planet Atlas Company
San Francisco-based company that produces digital map atlases.

Society of Cartographers
Professional cartography society based in the United Kingdom.

Southern California Integrated GPS Network
(SCIGN) is a collaborative project to install 250 permanent, continuously recording Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers in and around the Los Angeles basin.

SpatiaLogic mapping
California-based consulting company specializing in mapping and geographic information.

Statistics Every Writer Should Know
So should every cartographer. A nice write-up on basic statistics. Helpful for students.


Terra Data, Inc.
Provides data sets for GeoCart mapping software.

Terrain Data Representation Branch
Branch of the US Army involved with the development of terrain visualization techniques for use in battlefield visualization and virtual reality applications.

Thomas Brothers Maps
Developer and producer of street atlases. On-line locational data and maps of Los Angeles, CA, Portalnd, OR, Sacromento, CA, San Diego, CA, San Francisco, CA, Santa Barbara, CA, Seattle, WA, and Washington, DC.

Three-Dimensional Atlas Online
A nice educational resource with lots of links to different maps and images of the Earth.

Three-Dimensional Geographer
Commercial software utilized for 3-D mapping.

Value-added USGS topographic maps on CD-ROM.

Online scanned USGS maps at various scales. Great for a quick look at an area!

Trails Illustrated
Excellent selection of topographic sheets for National Parks.


United States Coast Guard - Differential GPS Corrections
Differential GPS corrections provided by the US Coast Guard.

United States Gazetteer
Place-Name on-line mapping system provided by the US Bureau of the Census.

United States Geological Survey - Understanding Maps
USGS educational site on mapping for kids.

United States Naval Observatory - GPS Data and Information
GPS satellite positional information provided by the United States Naval Observatory.

United States Naval Observatory - Sun or Moon Rise/Set Table
Place-specific information on the Rise and Fall of the Sun or Moon.

University NAVSTAR Consortium
UNAVCO is a consortium of 100 international universities and laboratories joined to promote the use of the Global Positioning System (GPS) for high-accuracy geosciences research.

USA Counties 1996
USA Counties, from the Census Bureau, compiles useful demographic, economic, and governmental information spanning several years and sources for county comparisons and profiles.


Provides services and programming for spatial data analyses tasks.

Virtual Tourist
Lots of fun, touristy information.

Visio Mapping Software
Producer of data exploration and mapping products.


What are Cartograms?
Inforamtion about generating cartograms.

World of Maps
Resellers of map products.

World Map Software
WORLDMAP is easy-to-use software for exploring geographical patterns in diversity, rarity and conservation priorities from large biological datasets. Demonstration version is free.

Wormley's GPS Resources
Nice set of links for GPS resources.



Yahoo's Cartography Listings
Yahoo's set of links for cartography.