NEW:  Search by Text-on-Maps! To learn more, see the About Text on Maps Help Guide.

Here are some of our favorites:

Gold Mine   Lighthouse   Yosemite   Ruin   Cairo   Madrid


 Browse 131,000 Maps and Images in LUNA Viewer  Visit David Rumsey Map Center at Stanford Library    View Maps Recently Added to Online Collection   

Welcome to the David Rumsey Map Collection. Here you can explore maps through a variety of viewers. Read the Blog to learn more about collection highlights, such as Urbano Monte's manuscript world map from 1587. Visit the physical collection at the David Rumsey Map Center at the Stanford University Library.  Or take a virtual tour of the Map Center, which hosts events such as the recent Barry Lawrence Ruderman Conference on Cartography : Indigenous mapping

The historical map collection has over 131,000 maps and related images online. The collection includes rare 16th through 21st century maps of North AmericaSouth AmericaEurope, Asia, Africa, Australia, Antarctica, the Pacific, the Arctic, and the WorldThe online map collection is a searchable database that allows you to make your own journeys into spatial representations of the past. Here you can see the history of cartography through primary sources from 1500 into the 21st century. 

NEW: Random Browse the collection (desktop and tablet only). 250 images at a time. Refresh the link to see 250 more. We invite you to get pleasurably lost.

Newspaper Maps   Imaginary Maps   Ethnography   Title Pages   Art Maps   Pacific
Views   Timelines   Aerial Photographs   Automobile Maps   Composite Maps   Airlines
Mountains Rivers   Space   Manuscript   Climate   Ethnographic   Ottoman Maps
World   The Americas   Celestial   Maritime Charts   U.S. Civil War   Antarctica
Data Visualization   Cities   Globes   Atlases   Africa   Children's Maps
Pictorial Maps    Asia   Europe   Geology Maps   Arctic   United States

Advanced search allows refined inquiries for precise results, while browsing encourages serendipitous exploration, honoring the legacy of library shelves. Popular collection categories include  data visualizationcelestial maps, atlases, globes, school geography, maritime charts, city atlases, pocket maps,  children's maps, and manuscript maps. Subject and place examples: Pictorial, GeologyCaliforniaNew York City, U.S. Civil War, Afghanistan, Moon, Mountains and Rivers, Migration, Languages, Religions, Railroads, Climate, Agriculture, Economics, and Zoological. Browse search facets: What, Where, Who, When. The collection supports the study of topics such as history, ethnography, technology, environmental science, genealogy, and art. Learn more


View 3 Panoramas of original Collection Space Browse Lists of the Collection's many Atlases Explore - Georeferencer v4 Launched

urbano monte's planispere 1587

Largest Early World Map - Monte's 10 ft. Planisphere of 1587

An extraordinary 60 sheet manuscript world map made in 1587 by Urbano Monte has been added to the David Rumsey Map Collection at Stanford University. At 10 foot square, this map or planisphere is the largest known early map of the world. It was hand drawn by Monte in Milan, Italy, and only one other manuscript copy exists. The digitally joined 60 sheet map image below is the first time the map Monte made has been seen as one unified map - as Monte intended - in the 430 years since it was created. See all the individual sheets here.

Monte's map reminds us of why historical maps are so important as primary resources: the north polar azimuthal projection of his planisphere uses the advanced scientific ideas of his time; the artistry in drawing and decorating the map embodies design at the highest level; and the view of the world then gives us a deep historical resource with the listing of places, the shape of spaces, and the commentary interwoven into the map. Science, art, and history all in one document. Until now, Monte’s manuscript map was seen as a series of 60 individual sheets. The only assembled version is the small single page key sheet of the series. Now that we have joined all 60 sheets digitally, we can appreciate in a new way the extraordinary accomplishment that Monte made. The assembled map, just over 10 feet in diameter, is one of the largest—if not the largest—world maps made in the 16th century. The degree of detail and decoration is stunning and the entire production is surely unique in the history of cartographic representation. Read Full Blog Post


Improved georeferencer v4

Fix Location of a Map

Georeferencer v4 is an improved and updated version of our prior Georeferencer v3.  It allows you to overlay historic maps on modern maps or other historic maps. The overlaid maps reveal changes over time and enable map analysis and discovery. You can choose your own maps to georeference by Searching LUNA and using the Georeference This Map button or help us georeference the entire online map library using our Random Map link to georeference maps in our First Pilot Project of 6,000 maps of major cities and regions. Users who georeference the most maps will be recognized in the bar displays below. Recently Georeferenced maps can be viewed by image or by location.

 Learn more




featured app - maprank search

The MapRank search tool enables geographical searching of the collection by map location and coverage, in a Google Map window. Pan and zoom the Google Map to the area of the world you want maps of, and the results will automatically appear as a scrollable list of maps with thumbnail images in the right side window. The maps in the right side list are ranked by coverage, with the maps that have coverage closest to your search window listed at the top. Mousing over any map in the list will show the map's coverage as a light red rectangle on top of the Google Map. Clicking on a map in the list will open it in the Luna Browser. You can filter your results with the When timeline, the What or Who keyword text window, and the Map scale windows, as well as search by place name in the Find a place window.  Learn more