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Fact Sheet 2011–3009

The National Map

Scanning and Georeferencing Historical USGS Quadrangles

By G.J. Allord and W.J. Carswell, Jr.


Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (2.76 MB)

The USGS Historical Quadrangle Scanning Project (HQSP) is scanning all scales and all editions of approximately 200,000 topographic maps published by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) since the inception of the topographic mapping program in 1884. This scanning will provide a comprehensive digital repository of USGS topographic maps, available to the public at no cost. This project serves the dual purpose of creating a master catalog and digital archive copies of the irreplaceable collection of topographic maps in the USGS Reston Map Library as well as making the maps available for viewing and downloading from the USGS Store and The National Map Viewer.

Revised September 1, 2011

First posted January 19, 2011

For additional information contact:
G.J. Allord, National Geospatial Program
U.S. Geological Survey
465 Science Dr., Suite A
Madison, WI 53711

Part or all of this report is presented in Portable Document Format (PDF); the latest version of Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view it. Download the latest version of Adobe Reader, free of charge.

Suggested citation:

Allord, G.J., and Carswell, W.J., Jr., 2011, Scanning and georeferencing historical USGS quadrangles: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2011–3009, 2 p., available at


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