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Historical Maps of Toronto

Historical Maps of Toronto - Bird’s Eye View Chromolithograph
Explore Toronto’s past through Historical Maps

Historical maps of Toronto - Map of York 1812Historical Maps can be a great resource to help people learn more about certain geography at a particular point in time, help locate where our ancestors lived, or help us understand how a neighborhood or surrounding area changed over time. Because older maps were created by hand, they tend to be more artistic and visually appealing and thus can be attention grabbers.

Historical Maps have existed in libraries & various personal collections for years but thanks to advancement in digital technology and the internet, we have started to see more old maps being shared in the geospatial community.

The Historical Maps of Toronto blog created by historical maps enthusiast Nathan Ng provides simple and free access to a large selection of notable historical maps of the Toronto area that have been scanned from collections at the Toronto Library and the Toronto archives.  He started the site as a way to generate more curiosity for geography, and as a way to provide an easy entry point for people to discovery and further investigate historical cartography.

Maps on the site generally have public domain status (except where otherwise noted) and can be downloaded, printed and shared.

Some of the maps in the collection include:

Plus many more, click here for a full list of Historical Maps of Toronto maps available

Online Toronto Historic Maps comparison tool

Are you a resident of the Greater Toronto area and want to know what your community looked like 50 years ago?

Well Nathan Ng has also taken his blog a step further by teaming up with Esri to create the Online Toronto Historic Maps comparison toolThis free web application provides people with the ability to compare different places in Toronto through time from 2013 back to 1818.

Historical  paper maps from the Toronto Library and the Toronto archives were scanned, georeferenced, mosaiked and then combined so that people could compare them with one another using a simple easy to use interface that anyone could use.

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