The Heritage Center maintains a collection of maps which show Fresno County and its towns throughout various stages of their respective evolutions. Of prime importance are:

  • Thomas H. Thompson Atlas of Fresno County (1891)
  • William H. Harvey Atlas of Fresno County (1907)
  • Progressive Atlas of Fresno County (1935)
  • California Agri-Land, Fresno County (various years, 1978-2001)

These volumes survey the county by township and indicate the names of rural property owners. Also included in the Heritage Center's collection are:

  • Fresno County real estate atlases, 1966 - 1981
  • Aerial survey maps of Fresno County, 1960's - 1970's

Online map sources that include Fresno County:

  • California State University, Chico: Has a searchable online collection of older United States Geological Survey and other topographical maps, covering Fresno County and California.
  • David Rumsey Map Collection: Contains 11,000 maps, all viewable and searchable online; many of them feature California and the American West.
  • USGS: United States Geological Survey's Geographic Name Information Server for searching for place names and geographical features.
  • Library of Congress Map Collections: A useful collection organized into seven major theme areas.
  • Map History/History of Cartography: Bills itself as “THE Gateway to the Subject.” Links to many online digital map collections.
  • Mapquest: can pinpoint addresses and even features aerial survey views of locations throughout the county.
  • Maptech: for those desiring detailed topographical maps.
  • Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection: From the University of Texas. Many interesting images and helpful links.

Sanborn Maps :

For charting the block-by-block growth of Fresno County towns and cities, the Sanborn fire insurance maps display information found nowhere else. Utility lines, property dimensions, building specifications/modifications, and much other historically useful data are available on these maps. See a list of the Sanborn maps covering Fresno County.The Room has copies of three original Sanborn atlases for Fresno proper, and microfilm copies of atlas plates for other county cities and towns.

Environmental Data Resources, Inc.: Successor to the Sanborn company; can provide digital copies of Sanborn maps for a fee, along with historic aerial and topographical maps.

More information about Sanborn maps: