Guide to the Research Collections

- SECTION -- III -- THE SOCIAL SCIENCES
- PART TWO
- 43 -- MAP DIVISION AND GENERAL MAP RESOURCES
- COLLECTING POLICY

COLLECTING POLICY

The Map Division contains approximately 300,000 sheet maps, 6,000 atlases, and 11,000 volumes on cartography and the techniques of map making; a sample of almost every type of map available is included. The primary aim of the division is to secure maps, atlases, and works in the field of cartography of use to the reading public. The division collects sheet maps and atlases on a universal basis, irrespective of date, country of origin, size, or rarity; large-scale maps are preferred. Particular emphasis is placed on maps of New York City and New York State.

The collecting policy follows the tabulation given below:

Weather charts

The Research Libraries do not collect in the following categories:

The 6,000 atlases now in the Map Division date from the seventeenth century to the present. Atlases and separate maps published prior to 1600 in Europe and before 1800 in the United States are housed in the Rare Book Division; the Map Division maintains a growing collection of facsimiles of early atlases and maps. Manuscript maps are generally held in the Manuscripts and Archives Division; there are many rare atlases and maps in the Spencer Collection, the Prints Division, and in other divisions of the Research Libraries (discussed in later paragraphs).

The Map Division catalog includes entries for these items with analytic entries for maps in atlases published before 1800; it is a union list for all maps in the Research Libraries. The 11,000 volumes in the division form an outstanding collection on the history of cartography and the techniques of map making.