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A mid-century map of the western part of the United States, one of the first maps to show the state of California and the territories of Utah and New Mexico. The map is an updated version of a map that appeared in S. Augustus Mitchell's Universal Atlas of 1849. The southern part of the region shown in that map, "Upper California," had just been won from Mexico in 1848, and Mitchell's map was important for presenting the vast new U.S. territories to the American public. In 1850, the rights to Mitchell's atlas were sold to the firm of Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co., which reissued the atlas with some updating. That year the newly acquired lands were divided by Congress into the state of California and two territories, Utah and New Mexico; Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co. revised the Mitchell map accordingly.
Besides the new political information that appeared on this map, what had appeared on the 1849 map as the "Great Interior Basin" is now somewhat filled in based on Fremont's map, renamed "Fremont Basin." Other topographical features included considerable orography, rivers, and lakes. The Great Salt Lake is shown, next to which is "Salt Lake City. Mormon Set.," which had just been settled in 1847. Early settlements and a coastal road are illustrated in California, and the old Spanish trail between Santa Fe and Los Angeles is also indicated. Of further interest is the prominent depiction of the Oregon Trail, shown snaking from present-day Colorado to the Columbia River. The entire region north of Utah and California appears as the Oregon Territory, which it remained until the Washington Territory was created in 1853. Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co. continued to revise this map, for in 1851 they came out with a further up-dated map retitled "A New Map of the State of California," and with more information provided on the counties of the territories and state. This is a fascinating and historical important map, one of the first to show the new political situation in the west after the Compromise of 1850. $875
"Map No. 10. United States." From Roswell C. Smith's A Precise and Practical System of Geography. New York: Burgess & Co., 1853. 10 1/4 x 8 7/8. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition. Denver.
A small but interesting map of the configuration on the western U.S. shortly after gold was discovered in California. Shows Washington and Oregon extending from the Pacific to the crest of the Rockies, and Utah and New Mexico extending from California to the Rockies. Nebraska and the North West Territory are shown in part. $150
Carl Flemming. "Californien, Oregon, Utah und Neu-Mejico." From Heinrich Berghaus's Vollständiger Universal-Handatlas. Glogau, Germany: C. Flemming, 1854. 15 1/2 x 13 5/8. Lithograph by C. Flemming. Original outline color. Very good condition. Denver.
Carl Flemming was the founder of an important German firm located in Berlin and Glogau and this map shows characteristic German detail. Germans were very interested in the western parts of the United States at this time and the atlas from which this map came contained not only two maps of the United States as a whole-one single sheet and one four part map-but also a number of regional maps including this one of the area to the west of the Rocky Mountains. The topography is graphic and begins to show an understanding of the complexity of the ridges, mountains, buttes, etc. between the Rockies and the Sierra Nevadas. The Great Salt Lake is shown, with "Saltlake City od New Jerusalem" indicated, and there is no evidence of the mythical "river of the west," reflecting that Flemming had access to the information brought back by the explorers and emigrants who crossed the Great Basin in the early 1850s. Indian tribes are indicated throughout, as are some of the early trails. The political situation is shown as it existed before the creation of the Washington Territory (1854), with the state of California and three territories--Oregon, Utah and New Mexico--indicated with outline color explained in a color key in the lower left. $475
"Territories of New Mexico and Utah." New York: J.H. Colton, 1855. Second state, 1855-56. 12 1/2 x 15 1/2. Lithograph. Full original hand color. Very good condition. Brown: 2; Wheat: 832. Denver.
An early example of J.H. Colton's important map of the American Southwest. With the American victory in the Mexican War (1846-48), the United States gained a huge amount of land to the west of the Louisiana Territory. In 1850, the territory gained outside of California was divided into two territories: Utah to the north, the home of the Mormans, and New Mexico to the south. This was one of the first maps to show this region and this early version of Colton's map--which went through at least 12 states until 1863--shows the original configuration of the two territories. The map is copious in its detail, forts, Indian tribes, counties, mountains, rivers, lakes are all clearly depicted.
The information is impressively accurate, being based on the various explorations in the area. The routes of a number of these explorers are shown, including those of Fremont, Stansbury, Kearney and Gunnison (the latter noting that "Capt. Gunnison Killed by Indians"). Also indicated are the Cimarron Route from Ft. Leaveworth to Santa Fe, the Spanish route from Santa Fe to Los Angeles, the Oregon Route, and the different proposed routes for the transcontinental railroad. This map is interesting in showing Colorado (then mostly part of the Kansas Territory) just before the Gold Rush of 1858-1861. Over the next 8 years, this region would undergo tremendous changes, documented well in Colton's series of maps, of which this is the second state. $395
"Territories of New Mexico and Utah." New York: J.H. Colton. Fourth state, 1857-58. 12 1/2 x 15 1/2. Lithograph. Full original hand color. Very good condition. Brown: 4; cf. Wheat: 832.
A slightly later edition of the map above, but without the decorative border. $350
"A New Map of the State of California, The Territories of Oregon, Washington, Utah & New Mexico." Philadelphia: Charles Desilver, 1856. 16 x 12 3/4. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition. Denver.
Charles Desilver, one of the many publishers working in Philadelphia during the mid-nineteenth century, issued an atlas of maps based on the famous Tanner-Mitchell-Cowperthwait series. Desilver used much the same information as originally drawn in the 1840s, but updated the maps with new counties, roads, towns, etc. Here the country west of the Rockies is depicted with the state of California and the rest comprised of just four territories: Washington, Oregon, Utah and New Mexico. Settlement in those territories was quite sparse at the time, with some cities shown, and a number of counties developed in the western part of the northern most territories. The map was issued just after the Gadsden Treaty (1854) so the current southern border with Mexico is depicted. Of note are depictions of the southern route proposed for the Pacific Railroad, the Spanish trail from Santa Fe to Los Angeles, the routes of Lewis & Clark and Fremont, and the Oregon Trail. Forts are indicated, as are the territories of various Indian tribes. Of interest is the small section entitled "Middle Park," which is shown as part of Utah, but which is currently part of Colorado (the western part of which is shown as part of Kansas Territory. Overall, a terrific and up-to-date map of the western United States. $650
F.W. von Egloffstein after surveys by John N. Macomb. "Map of Explorations and Surveys in New Mexico and Utah...by Capt. J.N. Macomb Topl. Engrs....1806." New York: Geographical Institute, 1864. 30 3/4 x 37 1/4. Tinted aquatint engraving. Some separation and very light discoloration at folds. Overall, very good condition. Wheat: 983. Denver.
A nice example of what Carl Wheat called "one of the most beautiful maps ever published by the Army," a map that "is a landmark map for various regions." It shows the region around the "four corners" in the American Southwest, based on surveys from an 1860 expedition led by Captain John N. Macomb to explore the Old Spanish Trail from New Mexico towards Utah. The expedition is important in its confirmation that the Green and "Grand" (now Colorado) Rivers joined to form the Colorado just above the Grand Canyon. The map was printed in 1864, but didn't actually get published until 1875 because of the Civil War.
Wheat's comments on its importance is not only based on its geographical significance, but also because of its documentation of the routes of various explorer's routes, including Macomb's as well as those of Gunnison, Marcy, and Father Escalante and others. The last factor in Wheat's judgments is it striking appearance, where it looks almost three dimensional. This is the result of a technique of depicting topography developed by F.W. Egloffstein, where his intent was to "give his map the appearance of a small plaster model of the country." This was achieved by applying very fine lines on the plate by use of a ruling machine (done by Samuel Sartain), which were then exposed to acid to varying degrees to achieve the desired appearance. Only a few maps where made using this difficult process and this is the finest example thereof. The map is a wonderful depiction of the main drainage areas of the American Southwest, as well as many other features such as pueblos, archaeological sites and settlements, all conveyed with a remarkable appearance that few other maps have every matched. $1,800
"Colton's Map of California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona & New Mexico." New York: G.W. and C.B. Colton & Co., 1866. 16 3/4 x 26. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition. Denver.
A fascinating map of the southwestern part of the United States by the Colton firm of New York City, issued just after the Civil War. This was a period when the American west was really opening up for settlers and this map captures the region at a very early stage of its development. When issued, the territories had taken on the shape that the states have today, though in this early version of the Colton map of the region Nevada's southern tip is shown as part of Arizona. Detail or topography is very good, but it is the social information that is so interesting. Towns, forts, Indian tribes, passes, explorer routes, the pony express, and early trails (e.g. "Emigrant Road") are all depicted. Of particular note are the indications of early railroads, both proposed and existing, including the proposed route of the "Pacific R.R." California, in contrast to the territories, is shown extensively developed, with many counties, towns, and a network of roads and rail lines. JT OUT ON APPROVAL
Go to a sequence of maps of this same area, from about 1860 to 1880
"Gray's Atlas Map of New Mexico and Arizona." Philadelphia: O.W. Gray, 1874. 11 1/2 x 14 1/2. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition. Denver.
An interesting map of these two southwestern territories (both admitted as states in 1912). Arizona had been split off from the original, larger New Mexico territory in 1863 and this map shows the region as it was beginning to develop a decade after the Civil War. Towns, counties and forts are shown throughout. Of particular interest is the information on the railroads in the territory, including the Atlantic & Pacific R.R. and the Texas & Pacific R.R. Counties are indicated with contrasting shades and topography is shown with hatchuring, both giving the map a pleasant appearance. $150
"Asher & Adams' New Mexico." Washington: Asher & Adams, 1874. 16 1/2 x 22 1/4. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition. Denver.
It was only towards the latter part of the nineteenth century that today's western states took their status as independent territories and then states. Thus, it wasn't before then that there were individual maps of these political entities. Asher & Adams' atlas issued in 1874 contained quite a number such maps, and these are amongst the earliest available of the individual territories. Each contains good detail of towns, roads, rivers, early survey-lines, and political divisions. Though the Territory of New Mexico was established in 1850-as part of the Compromise of 1850-it wasn't admitted as a state until 1912. This map shows the slow progress of the US government survey in the territory, with most settlement still around Santa Fe in the north or along the Rio Grande river. Because of the shape of the map, and the large scale, the southern part of New Mexico-which had been added in 1853 by the Gadsden Purchase-is shown to the right with a western orientation. $165
"County and Township Map of Arizona and New Mexico." Philadelphia: W.M. Bradley & Bro., 1887. 14 x 21 3/4. Lithograph. Original color. Very good condition. Denver.
A neatly detailed map from the Philadelphia publishing firm of William M. Bradley & Bros. While Philadelphia was no longer the main center of cartographic publishing in North America by the late nineteenth century, many fine maps were still produced there, as is evidenced by this map. The map shows the two territories (which achieved statehood only in 1912) which had been split from the original New Mexico Territory in 1863. Topography, political information, towns, and physical features are all presented precisely and clearly. Particular focus is on the many railroads, which were essential in the development of this region, including the Southern Pacific. $165
"New Mexico." Chicago: Geo F. Cram, 1887. 12 x 10 1/4. Wax engraving. Very good condition. Denver.
A colorful, detailed map of New Mexico from the latter part of the nineteenth century. The George Cram Company was an engraving and publishing firm from Chicago. In the mid-nineteenth century, the center of cartographic publishing was New York City, but in the 1880's this began to shift towards Chicago with the advent of the Rand, McNally and Cram firms. These firms were noted for their efficient output of precise maps filled with useful and up-to-date political and cultural information, and details on roads, towns, railroads, and so forth.
"Tunison's New Mexico." Jacksonville, Illinois: H.C. Tunison, 1889. Wax engraving. Original color. 9 3/4 x 12. Very good condition. Denver.
A handsome map of New Mexico from Tunison's Peerless Universal Atlas. With the development of wax engraving (cerography), more maps and atlases were able to be produced in cities beyond the major centers of New York, Philadelphia and Chicago. Henry C. Tunison issued a series of fine atlases beginning in 1885 and lasting into the beginning of the twentieth century. This is a nice example of his output, showing New Mexico while still a territory. Detail is impressive, showing the roads and towns throughout, and including good detail of topography, including the "Llano Estacado" in the southeast. In 1883 the outlaw Billy the Kid was killed by Sheriff Pat Garrett near Fort Sumter, and in the same year that this map was produced Geronimo, the Apache chief, led an uprising against U.S. troops. This up-to-date map showing the recently formed Sierra County is an excellent snap-shot of the territory at this time. The Washington and Utah Territories are shown on the reverse. $125
"New Mexico Railroads." From Rand, McNally & Co.'s Indexed Atlas of the World. Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., 1906. 18 3/4 x 12 3/8. Very good condition.
Large, colorful atlas map of New Mexico detailing roads, railroad lines and topography, and includes an index of major railroads operating within the state. $70
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