Skip to main content

GEOG 222: Finding a Print Map

Introduction

Finding just the right map is sometimes like finding a needle in a haystack. Maps are located in many different parts of the library and are included in many different kinds of published materials. Because perfectly good maps can be a part of a larger work, you need to search in the types of works that are likely to contain maps and also limit your search by the geographic area you are interested in researching. Generally speaking, lots of books have maps in them but not all of these books are cataloged as Maps.

It is important to be flexible about the name of your geographic location. Think in terms of the location and how it fits into a hierarchy of place. For instance,

Ostrander is a small town in the 
     Scioto River Watershed. It is located in 
          Delaware County, in 
               Central Ohio, in 
                    Ohio, in the 
                         Ohio River Valley, in the 
                              Midwest, in the 
                                   United States

While you might not find a map of Ostrander, you might find Ostrander located on a map of the watershed, or the county, or the relevant topographic quadrangle. A book about the Underground Railroad in Ohio could easily include a map of Ostrander as it was then. Think about the notable events that have occurred in or near your geographic location and how these events might find their way into books. 

For this exercise, you will search for your map using either CONSORT or OhioLINK with Keyword searching. Since you are limited to these databases, you will not be finding your map in journals or newspapers - even though these are also excellent sources for maps. Remember, with keyword searching you can find your term in the title field, author field, subject field, or notes field.