This 1868 map of New London is excerpted from the Frederick W. Beers Atlas of New London County, Connecticut. An original print copy is available in the Lear Center for Special Collections and Archives (in Shain Library). Reproductions of this map are available for sale online from Historic Map Works.
New London’s Black Heritage Trail celebrates three centuries of Black strength, resilience, and accomplishment. Some of the trail’s fifteen sites explore nationally known people or incidents. Others honor people who have been nearly forgotten. Nearly all describe the determination with which New London’s Black community overcame obstacles through personal courage and by founding institutions to meet its social, political, economic and spiritual needs. Together, the sites tell a story about Black life in New London while tying into larger stories about enslavement, the Great Migration and the struggle for civil rights.
The Norman B. Leventhal Map & Education Center at the Boston Public Library has some 200,000 maps and 5,000 atlases. More than 7,000 of them have been digitized and can be found online in their Digital Collections. Included among the maps they offer is the 1876 bird's-eye view of New London:
Camel Tours is a collaborative, community-focused self-guided tour project hosted at Connecticut College that ambitiously endeavors to resolve historical inequities in the authorship of local histories, create opportunities for cultural tourism, and place the dissemination of heritage information firmly in the hands of local communities. Use the Tour Catalog to select an area of New London, then click on Discover to see a map of that area with all of the historic stops along the way. Listen to audio clips and see images that document the history of each stop. See also The Hygienic's list of murals in downtown New London.
The David Rumsey Map Collection at Stanford University contains more than 150,000 maps focusing on rare 16th through 21st century maps, and includes atlases, wall maps, globes, school geographies, pocket maps, books of exploration, maritime charts, and a variety of cartographic materials including pocket, wall, children's, and manuscript maps. Search the online collection.
Sanborn maps are old fire-insurance maps that consist of a uniform series of large-scale maps, dating from 1867 to the present and depicting the commercial, industrial, and residential sections of cities and towns across North America. Fire insurance maps are valuable to much historic research because they often provide evidence of change over time. Specific changes in an individual site such as when a building was expanded or torn down, can often be dated within a reasonably accurate time frame, depending on how many different map editions for that city are available. In print, Sanborn maps are available in various library and museum collections around the state. Online, too, many of them are available from various collections, including:
Check out some of the following years for New London:
Since 1817, the US Congressional Serial Set is a collection of House and Senate Reports and Documents dealing with proposed legislation and issues under investigation. The collection includes nearly 75,000 maps dealing with a wide variety of issues and locations. Search by keyword, or browse by map location, map subject, personal names, issuing agency, etc. Several dozen maps represent New London alone from the mid-1800s up to the recent past!
USGS Historical Topographical Maps originally published on paper in the period 1884-2006 have been scanned and published as PDF documents that are easy to search by location. Overlay various historical maps that present elevation (contour lines), hydrography, geographic place names, and a variety of cultural features.
Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) is a portal to the (digital) riches held within America’s libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural heritage institutions. All of the materials found through DPLA—photographs, books, maps, news footage, oral histories, personal letters, museum objects, artwork, government documents, and so much more—are free and immediately available in digital format.
The 1850 Plan of the City of New London from original surveys by J.C. Sidney and printed by Collins & Clark in Philadelphia is an invaluable historic map of downtown New London at the time of the arrival of the first railroads. As of summer 2019, original print copies of this map are hanging in the City Clerk's office in City Hall in New London and in the Lear Center for Special Collections and Archives in Shain Library at Connecticut College. Many thanks to the Connecticut Historical Society (via Connecticut Digital Archive) and the University of Wisconsin Libraries for making a digitized version available.
Maggie Redfern of the Connecticut College Arboretum has led tree walks in downtown New London to explore the past, present, and future of the tree canopy in New London. She uses this interactive Google Map to keep track of particular developments, such as the disappearance of a tree, or the identification of another exotic invasive.
UCONN's MAGIC maps are incredibly useful for historical research. Check out the aerial surveys beginning in 1934. Some useful links include: