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Tobin Map Collection

Tobin Map Collection

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The Tobin* International Geological Map Collection of the Walter Geology Library consists of more than 47,000 maps, atlases and map texts on geology and related subjects worldwide, but is particularly strong in maps of Texas and select U.S. and foreign areas of geologic interest. With the Map Room of the Perry-Castañeda Library, it serves as a federal map depository for U.S. Geological Survey maps, having an almost complete set of the series maps published by this agency.

(* While our map collection is named for the former firm that provided initial funding for the supporting endowment, we do not hold any "Tobin maps" that are used in the oil and gas exploration industry.)


When you do a more general catalog search for particular places and time periods, you will find books and other publications that may contain maps. In most cases, the descriptive catalog records will indicate the presence of maps in a publication.

catalog snapshot

catalog snapshot

Browse the Map section.
  1. In flat map drawers by geographic area. Maps of a given area may be in the flat map drawers, or in the filing cabinets. For browsing a given area, the flat map drawers are best because each drawer has a list showing contents, which is kept on top of the maps.  Maps are arranged geographically, following the general outline of the Library of Congress G (Geography) classification schedule.  
  2. In the Geologic Atlas of Texas 1:250,000 in filing cabinets. The Bureau of Economic Geology's Geologic Atlas of Texas 1:250,000 set, in the distinctive orange envelopes, located in the Texas filing cabinets (little orange envelopes on the drawers) Immediately following the Atlas is the Bureau's GQ- series of (mostly older) geology maps of smaller areas of Texas, with drawers marked by a little brown envelope. There is a list of the GQ- series titles at the beginning of the drawer.
  3. In the U.S. filing cabinets under G 3701 C5 svar (name of state). At the beginning of the U.S. filing cabinets are paper map indexes. Indexes to geologic mapping for each state are found under the call no. G 3701 C5 svar (name of state) They are out of date (latest 1980's) but can be useful in locating maps of a given area.
  4. In the Austin, Texas topographic map drawer. Sheets are arranged alphabetically by title (quadrangle name), regardless of scale. A full collection of United States topographic maps is located at the PCL.
Remove map(s) from the flat map drawers.

Pull the drawer out to its fullest extent, and if the desired map is close to the top of the stack, roll back the upper maps and remove it. If it is close to the bottom of the drawer, particularly if the drawer is heavily loaded, remove the maps on top in small batches, stacking each batch crosswise to the one below, so that when they are refilled, they will be in order.  There is a map scanner at located at a computer station and a drafting table located in the map room. 

Consult with Geology Library staff for further assistance.

Pointers to print map collections, online resources, and GIS data that are curated at the university, city, and state level.

Other Austin Sources

Texas State Agencies

Web Resources

Print Maps in the Tobin Collection

Search for maps in the library catalog by title, author, or series. Descriptions of the map series are listed in this guide under Series Descriptions and in the USGS Publications Warehouse.

Topographic Maps

Topographic maps of Texas are located in the map cases in the Southeast corner of the library. Topographic maps are shelved alphabetically by series or quadrangle name. The Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection houses topographic maps of the United States (including Texas) and foreign countries. Digitized versions can be found in United States 1:250,000.


USGS Maps are shelved by series in the green, vertical cabinets. Call numbers follow this form: MAP USGS [series abbreviation] [number]



Antarctic Geologic Map A
Circum-Pacific Map CP
Coal Investigations Map COAL or C
Folios of the Geologic Atlas GF
Geological Quadrangle Map GQ
Geophysical Investigations GP
Hydrologic Investigations Atlas HA
Hydrologic Unit Maps HUM
Land Use and Land Cover Map L
Mineral Investigations Resource Map MR
Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF
Missouri Basin Study MB
Oil and Gas Investigations Charts OC
Oil and Gas Investigations Map OM
Scientific Investigations Map I (SIM)
Topographic None

Regional Geological Survey Map Services

Deep Time Maps


Historical Maps

Tobin Support

Tobin Fund bookplateEstablished in 1980 by Tobin Research of San Antonio, the Tobin Fund provides all materials funds for the Geology Library map collection. The Tobin Fund has permitted the Geology Library to acquire some outstanding map materials and atlases. Investment proceeds from the endowment have also supported student assistants to catalog some of the collection, as well as funded the purchase of equipment, furniture, and supplies for the Map Room.

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