Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps: Not Just Tools, But Vivid Links To The Past
Picturing The Past
Last updated 7/20/2020 at 2:34pm
Beginning in the mid-19th century, fire insurance companies in the United States used detailed maps to determine liability risks.
The Sanborn Map Company quickly became the leader in the field and by 1916 was the only company producing fire insurance maps.
Properties and businesses in thousands of communities across America were documented. The maps included streets, sidewalks, water and gas lines, fire hydrants, railroads and waterways. Property boundaries and building footprints were laid out on the maps. A key helped identify materials used in the building construction, doorways, wi...