The California State Archives houses thousands of maps, dating from 1850 to the present day. Many of these maps were filed with the Secretary of State pursuant to specific laws dealing with early railroads and toll roads, delineations of coastal protection zones, decennial election district maps, and official copies of the diseños (sketch maps) that accompanied requests to the Mexican government for land grants. In addition, state agencies have transferred maps as part of the on-going records management requirements of state government.
Minerva, the State Archives' on-line catalog, contains descriptive records of more than 800 maps. This new keyword search provides a comprehensive way to find map descriptions by combining multiple catalog fields into one search box. The search terms can be as simple as a location (Sacramento, for example) or the name of a cartographer or engineer (Judah, for example). The search terms can be combined ("Sacramento Valley Railroad" Judah) for advanced searching capabilities.