College of Agriculture and Natural Resources
Center for Land Use Education and Research
Coastal 1934 Aerial Images


Connecticut Shoreline Change


Rectified 1934 Image Dataset for the Connecticut Shoreline

The goal of this project was to spatially align scanned 1934 aerial images for the Connecticut shoreline with the precision required to allow for direct comparisons with current conditions.  This site provides the background, the methods used to create the dataset, and links to online tools for viewing the results.    


The 1934 photographs were flown by the Fairchild Company and archived by the CT State library, the earliest set to cover the entire State.  The photographs were later scanned at high resolution by the library.  With support from UConn Magic these full resolution scans were made available for download.  As part of a shoreline change analysis project with UConn, CT DEEP, and CT Sea Grant, a portion of the scans along the coast were downloaded then rectified to match real world GIS coordinates.  In October 2015 we received funding through a Connecticut Sea Grant Development Proposal and a Cooperative Extension System funding request to complete the unfinished sections of the shoreline and create an online viewer for the public.

The Process

In summary the individual 1934 TIFF format files were downloaded, cropped to remove features outside the photographs and avoid camera distortion, then rectified to real world coordinates using the ArcGIS georeferencing tool.  These are not true ortho images which remove elevation effects, in fact any displacement from inland sections with large complex topography were deliberately ignored to maintain quality along the coast.  For a detailed description of the process click here [methods]. 

Take a Look!

1934 Comparison Story Map
Full Screen Swipe Map Viewer
ArcServer Image Service For GIS users, access the image services here:
and the map services of photo outlines here:

Contact Joel Stocker for more information

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