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Maps, Atlases, Aerial Images, and Cartographic Resources

Cartographic Collections Overview

The UCLA Henry J. Bruman Map Collection, administered by the Charles E. Young Research Library, consists of maps and atlases, aerial photographs, gazetteers, place name literature, and specialized books and journals about cartography, remote sensing, and geographic information systems (GIS).

The map and atlas collections are primarily post-1945 in origin, but we also collect facsimile editions of older maps in an effort to trace the origins of cartography. Although we collect maps depicting geographic coverage from all over the globe, our collection is especially rich in materials relating to Los Angeles City and County, southern California, and the remainder of California.

The YRL Research Library map collections are housed in two locations: the Research Library A-level Reading Room and the Southern Regional Library Facility (SRLF). The majority of maps located in SRLF are map series. These series represent geographic coverage of the entire globe and cover contemporary as well as historical time periods. They include all United States Geological Survey topographic maps at scales of 1:62,500 and 1:24,000 except for California; WWII-era Army Map Service maps; and series produced by national mapping agencies from numerous countries throughout the world. Graphic indexes for most of these series have been retained in the Research Library. These maps have been designated as non-circulating and must be paged back to the Research Library to be used. Maps housed in the SRLF are listed in the UCLA Library Catalog and must be used in the Research Library A-level Reading Room. Paged materials will be available for use by 5 p.m. on the next working day. We also have online access to our digitized topographic maps.

The UCLA Science and Engineering Library Geology-Geophysics Collection also has a map collection to support the faculty and students in Earth and Space Sciences.


The Bruman Map Collection contains many atlases. Some cover the entire world while others are concerned with specific continents, regions, countries, various administrative areas, and urban areas. The atlases contain information on an array of topics including history, physical and cultural geography, politics, vegetation, soils, the military, forestry, and climate, to name a few. The earliest atlases in our collection date from the mid-nineteenth century, with the exception of a rare volume from the 1645 Blaeu Atlas.

Vertical File Maps


Why "Vertical File?"

Because the folded maps are stored standing upright (vertically) in boxes, unlike the unfolded maps which are stored lying flat (horizontally) in drawers.

The UCLA Library has a rich collection of road and travel maps dating back to the early 1900s. Geographic coverage is from all over the world. The materials are divided into two collections:

Historical Vertical File Collection: maps printed before 1946; housed in the Research Library Closed Maps Stacks; staff assistance required to access the maps.

Contemporary Vertical File Collection: maps printed after 1946; housed in SRLF. See below for instructions for browsing via the Library's Catalog.