Contents & Links 


New - Gazetteer Server Client 2004-06-03

A new client for the ADL Gazetteer has replaced the former "new client" for the ADL Gazetteer Server. The new client retains the basic look and functionality of the original interface, but underneath it has been completely redesigned. It is now based on version 1.2 of the ADL Gazetteer Protocol, on version 3.2 of the Gazetteer Content Standard, and on a new PostGres database implementation. This new client points not only to the ADL Gazetteer, but also to the ESRI gazetteer. Please try it out and use the Problem Report or the Comment link to send us feedback.

Gazetteer Content Standard, version 3.2, and its relational database model - 2004-02-26

This version of the Gazetteer Content Standard (GCS) includes significant changes from the original GCS. The revision process has now been frozen for this release. A logical relational database model has been developed for this version and has been implemented by ADL in PostGreSQL. See the Guide to the ADL Gazetteer Content Standard for more information, including XML schemas, graphics of database tables, and sample full and minimum records.

Specific links to the original version of the Gazetteer Content Standard have been removed from this page but can still be accessed through person contact with ADL.

Gazetteer Service Protocol

Version 1.2 of the ADL Gazetteer Service Protocol has been published, along with sample code for a Java client. This specification supports remote query and response functions for distributed digital gazetteers and has been developed in collaboration with ESRI. On the referenced page, there are also two links to test forms. The Hands-on Introduction provides various types of queries for demonstration and experimentation; the Test Forms provide tests of the various protocol functions for validation and debugging.

New - Correlation data relating words/phrases in placenames to associated classification terms from three typing schemes - 2004-06-03

Dr. Jun Wang, with the assistance of his students with the Information Management Department of Peking University, recently completed an analysis of the 5.9 million names in the ADL Gazetteer and their association with the feature type classifications from three independent typing schemes: all of the names are associated with one or more terms from the ADL Feature Type Thesaurus and portions of the names are associated with either the gazetteer type terms from the U.S. Geological Survey or from the U.S. National Geospatial-Intellegence Agency (formerly NIMA). This data can be explored by downloading the client they developed: Please note that the client was developed in C#, hence it needs Microsoft .NET framework V1.1 and Microsoft Data Access Component, both of them can be downloaded from Microsfot website: and

For a view of what the data looks like, here is a screen shot of the client. On the left is a list of placename "tokens" that are 1 word in length, in order by frequency of occurrence in the ADL Gazetteer. The most frequently occurring word is "School". This word is selected and on the right are the associated feature type terms from the three schemes; the percentage values indicate the strength of relationship between placenames containing the word "School" and the particular feature type term.

We are interested in using this data to explore ways of assisting the process of assigning feature type terms to gazetteer entries and in extending type-based searching across independent, distributed gazetteers. The data also supports a form of term mapping between the classification schemes.

Licensing agreement for ADL gazetteer services and gazetteer data

ADL announces that it is prepared to license the ADL Gazetteer Services and Gazetteer Database and to establish affiliations with commercial and institutional organizations to further the advancement of gazetteers and related services and research. For more information, contact Larry Carver or Linda Hill.

Gazetteer discussion list

We have established a listserv for the discussion of gazetteer design, implementation, and research. The name of it is CGGR-L; it is hosted by UCSB's Center for Global Georeferencing Research. To subscribe, address your email to, leave the subject line blank, enter subscribe cggr-l [your name] in the body of the message (note: the "-l" stands for "-list") and send the message. The archives for the CGGR-L are hosted by the NSF.

List of 5.9 million geographic names available for download

The ADL Project has created a list of all of the names, both primary and alternative names, from its ADL Gazetteer and is making it available for download and local use within the limits of our copyright statement. We anticipate that the list will be useful for geoparsing applications where geographic names need to be identified in natural language text. Each entry in the list, one line per entry, consists of (1) the ADL Gazetteer Identifier for the entry associated with the name; (2) the name; (3) the date of entry into the database.The ADL Gazetteer Identifier for particular entries can be used with the Gazetteer Service Protocol to retrieve standard reports for the entry. The size of the compressed file is 55.1 Mbytes; uncompressed it is approximately 263.7 Mbytes.

  • To download the file, click here and save a copy on a local drive.

This file contains the ADL copyright statement and the compressed file of geographic names. If you are having trouble downloading because the file is large and transmission is interrupted, you might want to get the free HTTP/FTP client that can resume interrupted downloads where they leftoff, instead of having to start over. We would appreciate hearing from those who put the file to use.

How to cite the ADL Gazetteer

For a general citation to the ADL Gazetteer, use:

Alexandria Digital Library Gazetteer. 1999- . Santa Barbara CA: Map and Imagery Lab, Davidson Library, University of California, Santa Barbara. Copyright UC Regents. (ADL Gazetteer Development page with links to various clients and protocols that access the ADL Gazetteer).

To cite gazetteer data from a particular use of the ADL Gazetteer, use:

Alexandria Digital Library Gazetteer. 1999- . Santa Barbara CA: Map and Imagery Lab, Davidson Library, University of California, Santa Barbara. Copyright UC Regents.
[URL of the client or server used]. Accessed [the date the data was obtained].

To cite a particular piece of data from the ADL Gazetteer, use:

[Primary name (adlgaz-1-.....)]. Alexandria Digital Library Gazetteer. 1999- . Santa Barbara CA: Map and Imagery Lab, Davidson Library, University of California, Santa Barbara. Copyright UC Regents.
[URL of the client or server used]. Accessed [the date the data was obtained].


Hill, L. L. (2004, May). Georeferencing in digital libraries (guest editorial). D-Lib Magazine, 10 (5). (All of the articles in this issue refer to the role of gazetteers in georeferencing applications).

Hastings, J., & Hill, L. L. (2002, September 25-28). Treatment of "Duplicates" in the Alexandria Digital Library Gazetteer. Paper presented at the GeoScience 2002, Boulder, Colorado. Powerpoint presentation.

Hill, L. L. (2000). Core elements of digital gazetteers: placenames, categories, and footprints. In J. Borbinha & T. Baker (Eds.), Research and Advanced Technology for Digital Libraries : Proceedings of the 4th European Conference, ECDL 2000 Lisbon, Portugal, September 18-20, 2000 (pp. 280-290). Berlin: Springer. PDF file.

Hill, L. L., Frew, J., & Zheng, Q. (1999). Geographic names: The implementation of a gazetteer in a georeferenced digital library. D-Lib (January 1999). HTML file.

Hill, L. (1999). Gazetteer and collection-level metadata developments. In R. T. Kaser & V. C. Kaser (Eds.), Metadiversity. The Grand Challenge for Biodiversity Information Management through Metadata. The Call for Community. Proceedings of the Symposium sponsored by the U.S. Geological Survey Biological Resources Div. & the National Federation of Abstracting & Information Services (pp. 141-145): NFAIS. HTML file.

Hill, L. L., & Zheng, Q. (1999). Indirect geospatial referencing through place names in the digital library: Alexandria Digital Library experience with developing and implementing gazetteers. Proceedings of the American Society for Information Science Annual Meeting, Washington, D.C., Oct. 31- Nov. 4, 1999, pp. 57-69. PDF file.

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  Page Last modified: June 4, 2004

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