Pre-WW2 Maps of Poland & the former German East

In keeping with my map theme, I have provided links and pointers to what I consider 4 of the Internet’s best sites for genealogically useful maps covering the regions of pre-WW2 Poland (Polska) and the former German Eastern Provinces (mainly, Ost und West Preussen, Silesian, Pommern).  When used in combination with current map tools such as Google Maps, you should meet with fairly high success in finding old place locations, names, etc.  At least, I have had that good fortune.1799 Cary Map of Prussia and Lithuania

The most comprehensive database of its kind in the world. It contains 90820 locations with over 38.691 name changes once, and 5,500 twice and more. All locations are EAST of the Oder and Neisse rivers and are based on the borders of the eastern provinces in Spring 1918. Included in this database are the following provinces: Eastprussia, including Memel, Westprussia, Brandenburg, Posen, Pomerania, and Silesia.

The Atlas des Deutschen Reichs shows the division of the Empire into the nine main maps and two smaller maps of the original atlas. This atlas is a digitized version of an item in the collections of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries.

  • Author:     Ravenstein, Ludwig.
  • Title:     Atlas des Deutschen Reichs / bearb. von Ludwig Ravenstein.
  • Publisher:     Leipzig : Bibliographisches Institut, 1883.
  • Summary:     Zehn Blätter im Massstab 1:850,000, mit vollständigem Register aller auf der Karte enthaltenen Namen, nebst drei statistischen Karten der Bevölkerungsdichtigkeit, Konfessionen und Gewerbthätigkeit in Deutschland, und 16 Produktionskärtchen über Bodenkultur, Tierzucht, Nutzpflanzen und nutzbare Mineralien; mit ausführlichen statistischen Übersichtstabellen.
  • Archiwum Map Zachodniej Polski – Additional Maps of Pre WW2 Poland & Prussia.

    Zadaniem internetowego Archiwum Map Zachodniej Polski jest bezpłatne, szerokie udostępnianie wysokiej jakości kopii map archiwalnych. Szczególne miejsce zajmuje wśród nich niemiecka mapa topograficzna w skali 1:25000, cechująca się wysoką szczegółowością i dokładnością.

  • Map Archive of Wojskowy Instytut Geograficzny 1919 – 1939

    There are many websites on the Internet with scanned old topo maps, but resources related to Poland are limited. Polish Military Geographical Institute (1919-1939) developed and printed topographic maps which, in the 1930s were rated among the best in the world. Nowadays these maps are a fountain of information about pre-WW2 Poland and, at the same time, can be still used in the field to locate villages which have long disappeared from the ground and can not be found on modern maps. For these reasons we believe these maps should be made widely accessible and what better way than through the Internet? Although a daunting task we are positive we will manage to collect and present scanned images of all WIG maps and other geographic materials the Institute published.