Friday, March 30, 2007

Aerial Photography Florida

Historic aerial photographs (1930s to 1970s) for the entire state of Florida can be viewed on the Aerial Photography Florida website. Want to see what your neighborhood looked like from an airplane 50 years ago?

From the site's home page, click "search." You will see a map of the state. Use the "zoom+" button to zoom on the part of Florida that interests you. After you zoom in several times, you will see dots with years, which are the links to photos from that year of that place. If you zoom in more, you will see street names. You can use the "select" feature to draw a rectangle around the dots you want. Links to the photos will appear below the map. Click on the camera icon by the year you want, and a new window will open with that aerial photograph. You can zoom in closer by using the drop down menu, or by clicking on the photograph (which also recenters the image).

(If you know the Township and Range of where you are looking for, see the FAQ sections for how to target those images quickly.)

Old aerial photographs are used by ecologists, hydrologists, planners, geologists, and others. I use them primarily to look at changes in land use over time, or to see if a particular building really was there when other records say it was. If the picture is good enough, I may be able to tell the shape of a building, what kind of roof it had, or see where the driveway was.

These are old photographs, and technology has changed considerably, so don't expect the same quality image resolution you'll find on Google Maps. Nevertheless, these photographs are a tremendous record of Florida's development that might be useful to you in your work.


  1. Anonymous2:13 PM

    Here are some additional articles on aerial photography:

    Really cool photos are taken with this process.

  2. Very Cool Site This is my site

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  3. Anonymous9:54 PM

    Fantastic Resource!!! As a surveyor, engineer and absolute fanatic of the observation of the past, I used these maps to compare to historical and verbal accounts of Jose Hernandez Sugar Mills, Hernandez Landing and other sites that I personally observed at the request of my dad before the City of Palm Coast existed. And still today, they are still pushing our past under our feet but that is now how I earn MY living. Thanks for the record!!!

  4. Anonymous2:29 PM

    Links to UF imagery archive which is sparse at best. Only to coverages of my area (1943, 1951), of little value for seeing the growth in the last 30 years.


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