Cartographic

Visit the Cartographic Research Room in College Park, Maryland

Prepare for your On-site visit

Cartographic Research Room, 3rd Floor
National Archives at College Park
8601 Adelphi Road
College Park, MD  20740

Email: carto@nara.gov
Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:45 a.m. - 5:45 p.m.
Closed to the public on Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal Holidays

Records Retrieved from Stacks:
9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:00 p.m, 2:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m.

A researcher identification card is required to look at records at our facility. These cards are issued on the first floor in Researcher Registration. If it is your first time visiting, you may wish to review Information for Researchers.

On-site researchers may examine records and finding aids in the Cartographic Research Room. You may wish to obtain copies of records during your visit. See Obtaining Copies of Maps, Plans and Aerial Photographs for more information.

For the most productive on-site research, we recommend gathering citations prior to your visit.

Citations can be obtained through National Archives Catalog searches and inquiries to our Reference staff.

The best way to reach Reference staff is through email at carto@nara.gov. After your Cartographic inquiry is assigned to a staff member, they will get back to you within 10 business days.

Searches in the National Archives Catalog

To search for Maps, Drawings and Aerial Photographs in the National Archives Catalog:

  • From the National Archives Catalog main page, click on the "Advanced Search" link.
  • Select “National Archives at College Park-Cartographic” under the Location of Archival Materials drop box. Click Search.
  • To search by records type, select "Architectural and Engineering Drawings," "Photographs and Graphic Materials," or "Maps and Charts," from the Type filter box.
  • You may limit your search further by entering keywords in the Keywords boxes.

Most Cartographic Branch records identified in the National Archives Catalog are described at the series level rather than the item level. A series may contain one individual item or thousands of items. The Cartographic and Architectural staff plans to add more information at the item level, but very few series in the National Archives Catalog will ever include lists of individual items.

See also "Cartographic and Architectural Records"

How to Cite Records for viewing / copying

To pull, view and copy records from Cartographic and Architectural holdings, you will need to know:

  • Record group (RG) number
  • Series designator
  • Individual file notation

Examples:
Record Group 134: ICC Valuation Maps, Baltimore and Ohio RR; VS: 5, Maps 1-4
Record Group 77: Civil Works Map File, Z33-8

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