Historical United States Geological Survey maps can be one place to find locations of old schools and other geographic features that may no longer be in existence. Maps on the site are from the very early 20th century and later, but items from earlier than that may be included. Cemeteries and other features are shown as well. The map can tell you if the cemetery was at the top of a hill–something you always can’t get from a picture on FindAGrave. It’s also possible to document if Grandpa walked uphill to school both ways, but you’ll need to determine exactly where he lived and that will not be on these maps. There’s a brief introduction to using the site in this blog post on Rootdig.

1937 USGS map for area north of Carthage, Hancock County, Illinois.



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