Date of this Version
Technology has changed the focus of this collection in recent years. Presently, digital access to both maps and GIS data is the primary goal. However, maintenance of the paper map collection is vital, as it supports the graduate and undergraduate curricula in many areas. The paper map collection supports students studying geology, natural resources, geography, Great Plains studies, political sciences, history, community and urban planning, and architecture.
The University Libraries are a regional depository for U. S. Government documents, and the majority of maps in the Libraries' collection are distributed through this program. Although, most new maps currently received through this program are digital and access is provided on-line, 400 to 600 per year are still distributed in paper. These, and commercially published maps, such as those by National Geographic, make up the bulk of new paper maps added to the collection.
It has been the practice of the University Libraries to distribute the depository maps to the various libraries or library departments based on subject specialization. Thus, U.S. government maps dealing with agriculture, soils, or forestry are located in the C.Y. Thompson Library. Geology and domestic topographic maps distributed by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) are located in the Geology Library, and maps distributed by the U.S. Department of Energy are held in the Engineering Library. Love Library holds the rest of the collection. The C. Y. Thompson and Engineering map collections though important, are secondary to the Love and Geology collections in scope and size.