Oregon State UniversitySpecial Collections & Archives Research Center

Oregon State Highway Maps, 1918-1991

Scope and Content Note

The Oregon State Highway Maps consist primarily of the official highway map produced annually by the Oregon State Highway Department from the late 1910s through early 1990s. The collection also includes road and recreation maps produced by the U.S. Forest Service in the 1920s-1930s and several commercial highway maps.

Highway maps produced annually by the Oregon State Highway Department are included for almost all years between 1918 and 1991; maps for 1918-1942, 1945, 1948-1977, 1979-1986, and 1991 are part of the collection. Two of the commercial highway maps also include Washington. All of the maps are at a small scale (approximately 1 inch = 15 miles) in order to depict the entire state on one sheet. The more recent maps include maps of cities and towns. Many of the maps have linen backing that obscures text on the verso. Some of the state highway maps are photocopies. Duplicate copies of some maps are part of the collection.

In addition to showing federal and state highways in Oregon, the maps depict municipalities; predominant land features, such as rivers, lakes, and mountain ranges; state boundaries; populations of cities; mileage between towns and junctions; and National Parks, State Parks, and wildlife refuge locations. The maps also note locations of airports, roadside rest areas, fish hatcheries, lighthouses, county seats, and winter sport areas. Many of the maps also include tourist information for travelers, crucial State Laws pertaining to automobiles and drivers, and mileage tables for calculating trip distances.

Official highway maps published by the State Highway Department are available online in the Oregon Maps digital collection.

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