Dating Rand McNally and Gousha Maps

 

 

In cases when the year of publication was not shown on the cover or in the legend, map companies put date codes at the bottom of the main map. The table below shows the codes for two main map producers, Rand McNally and H.M. Gousha. While Rand McNally always used the first letter or first one or two digits of a code to indicate the year, the year letter could appear anywhere in the Gousha code, so other clues (census date, road network) may be necessary to verify it. Rand McNally first used date codes in 1919, and Gousha started in 1927.

Year Rand McNally H.M. Gousha   Year Rand McNally H.M. Gousha   Year Rand McNally H.M. Gousha
1919 A -   1949 9 W   1979 79 AB
1920 B -   1950 0 X   1980 80 AC
1921 C -   1951 1 Y   1981 81 AN
1922 D -   1952 2 Z   1982 82 MZ
1923 E -   1953 3 AA   1983 83 OB
1924 F -   1954 4 BB   1984 84 YL
1925 G -   1955 5 CC   1985 85 CP
1926 H -   1956 6 DD   1986 86 KX
1927 I A   1957 7 EE   1987 87 QD
1928 J B   1958 8 FF   1988 88 WJ
1929 K C   1959 9 GG   1989 89 ER
1930 L D   1960 0 HH   1990 90 IV
1931 M E   1961 1 II   1991 91 SF
1932 N F   1962 2 JJ   1992 92 UH
1933 O G   1963 3 KK   1993 93 GT
1934 P H   1964 4 LL   1994 94 NA
1935 Q I   1965 5 MM   1995 95 ZM
1936 R J   1966 66 NN   1996 96 BO
1937 S K   1967 67 OO   1997 97 -
1938 T L   1968 68 PP   1998 98 -
1939 U M   1969 69 QQ   1999 99 -
1940 V N   1970 70 RR   2000 00 -
1941 W O   1971 71 SS   2001 01 -
1942 X P   1972 72 TT   2002 02 -
1943 Y Q   1973 73 UU   2003 03 -
1944 Z R   1974 74 VV   2004 04 -
1945 5 S   1975 75 WW   2005 05 -
1946 6 T   1976 76 XX   2006 06 -
1947 7 U   1977 77 YY   2007 07 -
1948 8 V   1978 78 ZZ   2008 08 -

Stan DeOrsey has provided a more detailed explanation of how Rand McNally dates their maps.