Florida Map & Atlas Guide

Any Historical Florida Map can indicate who owned specific property in the state and which towns held the county seat at the time.  This information is a valuable starting point for your research pointing you to the right location of records.

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Solving Research Problems with a Florida Maps – If you have started your family research, you might have experienced trouble with trying to identify Florida city borders and names that have changed over the course of time. This can make it difficult to understand where your ancestors’ information is kept.

Because Florida historic maps were usually commissioned by the county seat, they often display information about the county, including town names. Reading a Florida map from the time period you are researching can help tremendously in solving these problems by leading you to the correct town records. It can also give you other leads, such as the location of city directories or old post offices in Florida.

Florida Map of Counties

Florida Map of Counties

Choosing the Best Florida Map – If you have a large source of maps to choose from, try starting with the area where your ancestors resided and looking for the maps with the most detail.  You can determine a lot by seeing if the area was still rural or more developed, and how far it was to the nearest city.  This can shed light on your family’s lifestyle and occupation. Were they farmers who lived in the country, or merchants who traveled often to a nearby city?  A map can give you an idea of what occupations were possible.

One of the biggest Caribbean and Florida map collections available is located in Gainesville at the P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History, which is part of the University of Florida Libraries. Many of the maps are either prints or originals. Many images of Florida maps from 1564 to 1926 can also be viewed online. That includes the Sanborn maps for the state. Many early to modern Florida maps can also be found in Cocoa at the Florida Historical Society Library.

Maps from all of the following sources are included in the PALMM World Map Collection:

  • Florida Department of Environmental Protection
  • Florida International University
  • Florida State University
  • University of Florida
  • University of Miami
  • University of North Florida
  • University of South Florida

The Sanborn maps were made between the late 1800s and the early 1900s. Urban areas may also have other fire insurance maps available. A set of original Sanborn map duplicate copies can be found at the University of Florida Libraries Map Department. The Library of Congress transferred them there. That collection is also available on microfilm in many libraries across the country. Online catalogs may list libraries that have the collection on file.

Florida Map of County Formations For The Years 1821-1997

These Florida maps shows the historical changes to Florida counties from 1821 to 1997.

Slideshow image
Florida County Formation years
1821 1822 1823 1824 1825 1826 1827 1828 1829 1831 1832 1833 1834 1835 1836
1838 1840 1842 1843 1844 1845 1846 1847 1848 1849 1850 1851 1852 1853 1854
1855 1856 1857 1858 1859 1860 1861 1866 1868 1870 1871 1872 1873 1874 1875
1877 1879 1880 1881 1883 1887 1889 1891 1897 1899 1905 1909 1910 1911 1913
1914 1915 1916 1917 1921 1923 1925 1926 1937 1939 1942 1947 1949 1951 1961
1968 1972 1997                        
Florida County Census Years
1821 1830 1840 1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900 1910 1920 1930      
Florida Census Year with previous Census Year overlayed:
1830 1840 1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900 1910 1920 1930        
Florida Census Year with Modern Map overlayed:
1821 1830 1840 1850 1860 1870 1880 1890 1900 1910 1910        
Florida Map Abbreviations
unorg. = unorganized
g. = gained
w. = with
fr. = from
atmt. = attachment
exch = exchanged
nca.= non county area
ch. = changed
Al  - Alachua
Bak - Baker
Bay - Bay
Bra - Bradford
Bre - Brevard
Bro - Broward
Ca  - Calhoun
Ch  - Charlotte
Ci  - Citrus
Cl  - Clay
Clb - Columbia
Clr - Collier
Di  - Dixie
DS  - De Soto
Du  - Duval
Es  - Escambia
Fl  - Flagler
Fr  - Franklin
Ga  - Gadsden
Gi  - Gilchrist
Gl  - Glades
Gu  - Gulf
Ham - Hamilton
Har - Hardee
Hen - Hendry
Her - Hernando
Hig - Highlands
Hil - Hillsborough
Ho  - Holmes
IR  - Indian River
Ja  - Jackson
Je  - Jefferson
Laf - Lafayette
Lak - Lake
Lee - Lee
Leo - Leon
Lev - Levy
Li  - Liberty
Mad - Madison
Man - Manatee
MiD - Miami-Dade
Mrn - Marion
Mro - Monroe
Mtn - Martin
Na  - Nassau
Ocb - Okeechobee
Or  - Orange
Os  - Osceola
Osa - Okaloosa
Pa  - Pasco
PB  - Palm Beach
Pi  - Pinellas
Po  - Polk
Pu  - Putnam
Sa  - Sarasota
Se  - Seminole
SJ  - St. Johns
SLu - St. Lucie
SR  - Santa Rosa
Sum - Sumter
Suw - Suwanee
Ta  - Taylor
Un  - Union
Vo  - Volusia
Wak - Wakulla
Wal - Walton
Was - Washington

Florida Maps & Atlases

1836 Florida MapThe David Rumsey Historical Florida Map Collection is scanned from original copies so you can see Florida as our ancestors saw them over a hundred years ago.

Some Florida map years (not all) have cities, railroads, P.O. locations, township outlines and other features useful to the Florida researcher.

Florida Map of D.O.T. County Road and Highway’s

Florida County DOT MapThe Florida Highway Department has prepared a series of county road maps. These maps contain more detailed information about man-made features than the geological survey maps. In addition to roads and boundaries, these maps include rural communities, churches, and cemeteries.

These maps are downloadable and are in PDF format. The main use of these are the locations of all known cemeteries in a county and of course the various roads and church locations. These Maps are Free to Download

External Links for Florida Maps

U.S. State Map Guides