Historic Preservation Resources: NYC Atlases & Land Books

NYC Atlases & Land Books

Atlases and land books, published by Perris, Bromley, Robinson, Beers, Sanborn, and others, are invaluable for tracing information on neighborhood development and on the history of a particular site. Most of these are fire insurance maps and were originally created to help insure particular properties against fire. They were published every few years and show what was standing at a particular time. Details can include the footprint and construction materials of residences, industrial sites, and commercial buildings; property boundaries including old farm lines; building use; house and block numbers; and names and widths of streets.


Fire Insurance Maps Online

Provides access to a digital collection of historical color fire insurance maps, real estate atlases, and similar land use maps for North America. High definition, color and gray-scale images display important historical details not visible on black and white map scans. Includes map research tools and search tips to make finding maps for a specific location easy. Maps include publications by Sanborn, Perris, Hexamer, Whipple, Baist, Bromley, Hopkins and others. Content and functionality will continue to be added.

For more information on finding and using New York City Atlases and Land Books, please see the Avery guide to these materials here.