The California Map Society’s Fall Meeting took place in the Cal State Fullerton Pollack Library, bringing together researchers, librarians, and cartographers to discuss interesting map and cartographic projects:
- Matt Zebrowski, cartographer with the UCLA Geography Department, discussed the department’s large Fairchild and Spence air photo collections;
- Charlie Frye, Chief Cartographer at ESRI, discussed his project using GIS to conduct genealogical research on a Revolutionary War ancestor;
- Patricia Prestinary, University Archivist at Cal State Fullerton, showcased highlights from the Roy Boswell Collection for the History of Cartography;
- Gary Gitzen, a researcher and scholar, discussed Edward Wright’s World Chart of 1599 to argue that Nehalem Bay in Oregon was the location that Sir Francis Drake described as Nova Albion;
The CSUN Map Library Geospatial Sanborn Finding Aid
It was an honor to attend the meeting and to present on the Map Library’s ongoing project to create a geospatial finding aid of the library’s collection of Los Angeles County Sanborn Fire Insurance Atlases. By scanning and georeferencing the Sanborn Atlas index maps using ArcGIS, we are in the process of creating an innovative geospatial finding aid for our collection of 600 Los Angeles County fire insurance atlases. The Geospatial Finding Aid will help improve access and discoverability of the largest collection of Sanborn Atlases on the West Coast.
An outline of why the project will help improve access to the collection was provided by pointing out how traditional library bibliographic controls pose an inherent reference challenge to a collection that largely receives spatial inquiries. An update of the project’s progress was provided: about 95% of the LA County index maps have been digitized, and of those, about 30% have been georeferenced and have spatial shapefiles created.
You can view the presentation slides below. If you have additional questions, please contact the Cal State Northridge Geography Map Library here.