The Library's map collection contains around two million items, and includes detailed coverage of the United States.
Our collections include historical atlases and early manuscript maps, along with current 1:24,000 maps of America and contemporary DeLorme atlases for all 50 states.
United States map highlights
Map of North America by George Willdey, 1715
Map of North America, 1715.
View large 1715 map on Flickr
From 'An atlas of the world', by George Willdey, published in 1717.
The map shows an ornate decorative title and dedicatory cartouche with a portrait of George I, supported by classical figures. It includes an advertisement to George Willdey's 'Great Toy Shop', with engraved pictures of the nécessaires, implements and scientific instruments sold there.
Library shelfmark: RSGS.35
Map of the states of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, 1792
South Carolina and Georgia.
View large 1792 map on Flickr
From 'The American geography; or, a view of the present situation of the United States of America: containing astronomical geography by Jedidiah Morse'. Printed for John Stockdale, 1792.
This map shows the states of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, along with the Spanish provinces of East and West Florida. Areas inhabited by Native American tribes are also depicted.
Library shelfmark: E.137.d.20.
The travels of Henrietta Liston
In the late 18th century, Scots Henrietta and Robert Liston travelled extensively in the United States, Lower Canada and the West Indies. Using the information in Henrietta's travel journals, we created a map interface to visualise the Listons' travels on a modern map. The interface also contains historical maps published by the geographer William Faden in 1796, the same year the Listons arrived in North America.
During their five years away from Scotland, the Listons visited 16 U.S. states, crossed the border into Lower Canada and toured nine Caribbean islands. By stagecoach, boat, canoe, carriage and cart they covered about 7,100 miles (11427km). Including their Atlantic crossings in 1796 and 1801, this rises to 16,000 miles (25750km).