Editor’s Note

On the Map: The Function, Use, and Preservation of Maps in Archives

There are a multitude of different types of maps stored in archives all over the world. The most common types of maps include political, physical, topographical, climate, economic, road, and thematic. With so much information included on a single map, patrons utilize them in various ways.

This issue of Primary Source focuses on those types of maps. What innovative ways have various archives used to encourage researchers to make use of maps? Is collecting maps become an important part of an institutions collection policy? If so, how and why?

The articles in this volume show how various repositories are handling maps within their collections and providing the utmost access to them for patrons. They also reveal how maps can be analyzed to discover societal implications.

These articles will hopefully help your institution decide how to best handle its map collection and how they can be utilized to further the mission of your repository.

Thank you,

Mona K. Vance


Mona K. Vance is the Archivist for the Local History Department at the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library in Columbus, Mississippi. She received her BS in Communications from Mississippi University for Women before earning her masters in History from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. She recently published her first book Images of America: Columbus through Arcadia Publishing. In 2011 she received the Award for Excellence for Archival Program Development from the Mississippi Historical Records Advisory Board and in 2012 an Award of Merit from the Mississippi Historical Society. She currently serves as Editor of the Society of Mississippi Archivists’ journal The Primary Source, a member of the Women Archivists Roundtable Steering Committee through the Society of American Archivists, and as a board member of the Stephen D. Lee Foundation in Columbus.