Physical Collection

The Map Collection contains over 150,000 aerial photographs of Iowa’s counties, all available for public use. Most of the photos were given to the collection by county extension offices over the years, and efforts have been made to fill in gaps in the sets. Photos may be scanned, removed from the room for photocopying, or—with restrictions—may be checked out for short periods of time.

Available photos can be searched in InfoHawk+. If you cannot find your desired county/year coverage in InfoHawk+, please contact us online or at the Map Collection.


The Iowa Aerial Photo Indices Digital Collection, containing images of over 2,000 aerial photomosaic index sheets digitized by Historical Information Gatherers, can be found on the UI Libraries’ Iowa Digital Library website.  The index sheets allow researchers to determine exactly which numbered photo(s) in a county are required for their research needs.  Please note that no individual photo images are included in this collection.

The Iowa Geographic Map Server site, made available through the Iowa State University GIS Laboratory, has digitized county aerial photos dating from the 1930s through the present. Many of these photos may be found in the physical collection as well.