15 May 2008

Oklahoma: Historical state maps online

Digitization of various materials and images is the wave of the future for family history resources. One recent program is that of the Oklahoma Historical Society, which has digitized and placed online more than 600 historical maps, thanks to a $200,000 grant from the Chickasaw Nation.

Plans are to make some 4,000 maps accessible through the society's website. PDF versions of the maps can be printed directly from the website and include original plats of nearly every town in what is now eastern Oklahoma. Some gems include an 1856 "New Map of Nebraska, Kansas, New Mexico and Indian Territories" (1856).

The grant enabled the OHS to purchase equipment and hire a full-time staff member. The society plans to scan 40,000 rolls of microfilm including its newspaper collection, although these may not be online but recorded on digital disks instead.

The next plan is to acquire enough server space to enable the OHS to open the collection to search engines Google and Yahoo.

The notice appeared here.

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