A new best practices document has just been created which is a
reformatting of 2 articles that appeared in ArcNews during the winter.
The USGS hosted a very interesting exhibit at last year's ESRI User
Conference on this very topic, showing the old copper plates, 1:62,500-
and other scale maps, theodolites, and more. For all of you who like
me used Leroy lettering, scribing needles, zip-i-tone to shade
choropleth maps, and Rapidograph 0, 00, and 000 pens at one time in
the past, these articles will make you feel really old...we are a part
of history! But beyond that, it is a fascinating tale of one of our
greatest national resources -- maps! ... and how some of the data we
routinely use in a GIS -- DEMs, DOQs, DRGs, and DLGs came to be.