TopoView highlights one of the USGS's most important and useful products, the topographic map. In 1879, the USGS began to map the Nation's topography. This mapping was done at different levels of detail, in order to support various land use and other purposes. As the years passed, the USGS produced new map versions of each area. The most current map of each area is available from The National Map. TopoView shows the many and varied older maps of each area, and so is especially useful for historical purposes—for example, the names of some natural and cultural features have changed over time, and the 'old' names can be found on these historical topographic maps.
This interface was created by the National Geologic Map Database project (NGMDB), in support of the topographic mapping program, managed by the USGS National Geospatial Program (NGP). Geologic and topographic mapping have a long tradition together (see 1888 report). The NGMDB project is proud to assist the NGP in bringing these maps to the Web.
Dave is Chief of the National Geologic Map Database project, and serves to help define the focus and development of topoView.
Greg joined us as a student over the summer and dives into anything we throw his way. He has a passion for making scientific data more accessible to the public through GIS.
New functionality and open-source api
We've made a lot of changes under the hood in our latest release of topoView. We've migrated off flash to an open-source mapping platform. The move enables greater user accessibility on a wide range of devices. All the core functionality remains the same, with the addition of a ton of new features to make obtaining maps from the historical topographic map collection easier than ever!
New file formats for download
GeoTIFF – The GeoTIFF files are a compressed, 300 dpi TIFF image format, with embedded georeferencing information so that the map can be used directly in a Geographic Information System (GIS). The GeoTIFFs are generated at true scale, allowing users to plot the map at the intended map scale in cases where a hard copy is needed.
JPEG – The high-resolution JPEGs, or "Browse" JPEG format are useful for getting a quick view of the map in order to find place names or simply explore the map area without the need for downloading a large file.
KMZ – The KMZ format is a compressed form of the KML format which is used for displaying the maps in Google Earth.
– Click to zoom in or hold shift key and click-drag the mouse (shortcut +).
– Click to zoom out (shortcut -).
– Click to zoom to the initial full extent of the viewer.
– Toggle between previous and current map extents.
– Share your maps with others (URL link opens to current map extent).
– Shows your current position based on Geolocation API.
– Send us your comments and/or suggestions.
– Visit our twitter page.
– Instantly zoom to a location by entering a city, zip code, address, or lat/long pair.
– Use the slider to adjust the opacity of the map boundaries.
– Filter maps by scale. The map scales shown are bins that contain maps of similar scale (i.e. the "~62,500" scale includes maps of 1:63,360). Map labels will appear when zoomed in when a scale bin is selected.
– Search by map name to find maps using the keyword search. Partial map name searches are supported by default.
– Toggle between basemaps using the basemap selector.