Sanborn maps may seem difficult to use, but researchers with the right tools will find it much easier to interpret them. The following resources are particularly helpful:
Sanborn map legends (color and black and white)
These keys, produced by the Sanborn Map Company, will help researchers understand the maps' color-coding, abbreviations, and symbols.
Reading Sanborn Maps
This PDF guide, produced by Environmental Resources Incorporated, includes a comprehensive list of all Sanborn map abbreviations and symbols. It is a great quick-view resource for researchers of all levels.
Description and Utilization of the Sanborn Map
North Carolina Reference Collection, Call number: GA325.S3 1960
This guide, also produced by the Sanborn Map Company, was intended to help professionals who might need to use the maps as a part of their jobs. In addition to information about the maps and their creation, it includes a history of the company.