Abstract: Lake and wetland are sensitive factors and indicators of regional environmental changes in arid areas. The recovery of lake and wetland information in Xinjiang not only provides basic hydrologic data for global change studies, but also essential environmental data for the study of the Silk Road in historical periods. The lake and wetland information was extracted through digital processing of the 1909 Xinjiang Map and a set of large-scale military topographic maps of Xinjiang in 1935, which was then validated against historical documents and modern satellite images. At the same time, standard classification and coding were performed to build the data set of lakes and wetlands in late Qing and Republican China.
Keywords: Xinjiang; first half of the 20th century; historical maps; lakes; wetlands