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Maps of Virginia & the Chesapeake Bay

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[ 19th century regional maps of the U.S. ]


Mallet: Virginia
Alain Mallet. "Virginie." From Description de l'Univers. Paris, 1683. 5 3/4 x 4. Engraving. Hand color. Large margins. Very good condition.

An early map of the Chesapeake Bay from Mallet's Description de l'Univers, a compendium of knowledge of the world issued near the end of the seventeenth century. The information fairly closely follows the Smith map outline, but with a more usual Northern orientation. The map shows the outline of the bay, along with the major rivers emptying into it. Also noted are Indian tribes and "Jamestowne" is indicated on the "Powhatan" River. With its wide dissemination, this small map of the Chesapeake would have provided many readers in Europe with their understanding of this early American colony. $350

Fry, Jefferson, Virginia, Maryland
Joshua Fry and Peter Jefferson. "Carte De La Virginie et Du Maryland." Paris: Gilles Robert De Vaugondy, 1755. 19 x 25 1/4. Engraving by E[lizabeth]. Haussard. Original outline color. Slight spotting and petite chips at extremities. Very good condition and impression. The strongest strike we have seen. Pedley: 470, state 1.

The first state of Robert De Vaugondy's French edition of the Fry-Jefferson map of Virginia and Maryland. This is one of the most famous of American maps, and the finest eighteenth century map of these states. Commissioned by the colonial government of Virginia, this is the first accurate map of the colony beyond the Chesapeake Bay region and into the Appalachian mountains. Joshua Fry, Thomas Jefferson's tutor, and Peter Jefferson, Thomas' father, based the map on their own surveys of the interior together with other first-hand information, producing a superior map that extends from the Chesapeake in the east to beyond the mountains in the west. This map was thus a watershed in the history of the mapping of Virginia and remained the prototype for the region for the second half of the century. The first edition of this map was published in London in 1751 in a very large size. Its impact was greatly increased by this reduced French edition, which came out a mere four years after the first English edition. In fact, it is said that Thomas Jefferson hung the smaller version at Monticello as the English copy of his father's map was too large. The map shows excellent topographical information from Delaware through western Virginia, presenting the development, transportation and economic potential of the mid-Atlantic English colonies in a wonderfully graphic manner. $4,200

Fry, Jefferson, Virginia, Maryland
Joshua Fry and Peter Jefferson. "A Map of the most Inhabited Part of Virginia containing the whole Province of Maryland...Drawn by Joshua Fry & Peter Jefferson in 1775." London: Sayer & Jefferys, 1775. Four sheets joined. 39 x 50 1/2. Engraving. Original outline color. Excellent condition. Stevens & Tree, 87, f.

One of the most famous of American maps, and the finest eighteenth century map of Virginia and Maryland. The map was commissioned by the English Lords of Trade as part of the comprehensive mapping of the British colonies undertaken in the middle of the eighteenth century. The surveyors were Peter Jefferson, Thomas' father, and Joshua Fry, a mathematician at the College of William and Mary and Thomas Jefferson's tutor, who had already taken a number of important surveying commissions in Virginia. The map was based on their own surveys of the interior together with other first-hand information. Fry and Jefferson finished their map in 1751 and then revised it a few years later to incorporate information from John Dalrymple and others concerning the western part of the colony. The resulting map was by the far the best of Virginia to date and the first to accurately map beyond the Chesapeake Bay region and into the Appalachian mountains. This map was thus a watershed in the history of the mapping of Virginia and remained the prototype for the region for the second half of the century. Not only was it the first map to show the western parts of the colony, but it was the first to depict the road system in the colony. In the lower right is a lovely title cartouche showing a harbor scene on the Chesapeake and a tobacco warehouse, a vignette that has earned its own place in American iconography.

Though dated in the map 1751-the date the manuscript was finished-the first issue of the map was probably published about 1753 and was titled "A Map of the Inhabited part of Virginia." It is exceedingly rare, with only a few complete copies known to exist. It was shortly after this issue that Fry and Jefferson updated the depiction of the western parts of the map, making a number of changes to produce what they called the "second edition" of 1755. This second edition was actually the fourth state, with two other intermediary states showing different stages in the modification of the geographic rendering on the map, as well as the change of the title to now read "A Map of the most Inhabited part of Virginia" (emphasis added). No more geographic changes were made, but the map went through four more editions with the date changed to 1768, 1775, 1782, and finally 1794. The issue of 1775, of which this is a fine example, was published for Thomas Jefferys' important American Atlas, which contained examples of the many great maps of the American colonies that resulted from the mid-century mapping undertaken by the British. $40,000

Dezoteux: Virginia, Maryland
"Chart for the Journal of Mr. Le Marquis de Chastellux by Mr. Dezoteux Staff Officer of the French Army." From Travels in North America, in the Years, 1780, 1781, and 1782 by the Marquis de Chastellux. Second edition. London: G. G. J. and J. Robinson, 1787. 7 x 10 1/2. Engraving. Hand color. With folds as issued. Stains in margin. Else, very good condition.

An interesting map that shows Chastellux's route through Virginia while serving under Rochambeau during the American Revolution. The route begins in Williamsburg and proceeds west to the Alleghany Mountains and back. Several small towns, court houses and churches are named on the route. Chastellux acted as the principal liaison officer between the French commander in chief and George Washington and he developed friendships with many important Americans. The College of William and Mary and the University of Pennsylvania awarded Chastellux with honorary degrees. Chastellux was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society. $825

Marshall: Siege of Yorktown
John Marshall. "Plan of the Investment and Attack of York in Virginia." Philadelphia: C. P. Wayne, 1804-7. 10 1/4 x 9 1/2 (plate mark). Line engraving by Francis Shallus. Mat burn in margins not affecting map information. Else, very good condition.

One of ten maps prepared for John Marshall's Life of George Washington which was published in French, Dutch, and German as well as English in the first decade of the nineteenth century. Long the standard biography, a separately issued atlas provided the best maps of the campaigns of the American Revolution then being issued. This one documents the positions of the armies around Yorktown at the time of Cornwallis' surrender in October of 1781. A fine, crisp depiction of that campaign. $275

Fielding Lucas, Jr. "Virginia." From A New and Elegant Atlas Containing Maps of each of the United States. Baltimore: F. Lucas, Jr., 1816. Folio. 18 1/2 x 10 3/4. Engraving. Full rich original hand color. Full margins. Nearly invisible repaired tear at bottom into neat line. Small stain bottom left neat line. Else, very good condition.

A fine series of maps by Baltimore cartographer, Fielding Lucas, Jr. (1781- 1854). Lucas appears to have become involved in the publishing and book trade while a resident of Philadelphia from 1798 to 1804, when he moved to Baltimore. In 1807 Lucas joined Conrad, Lucas & Co., and then in 1810 he set up his own business at 138 Market Street. There Lucas first got involved in cartographic publishing with his New and Elegant General Atlas of 1816. In the second decade of the nineteenth century, through his Philadelphia contacts, Lucas was one of the major contributors to Carey & Lea's atlas of 1823. Concurrently with this involvement, Lucas brought out his own General Atlas, containing 104 maps of all parts of the world, engraved by B.T. Welch & Co. of Baltimore and Young & Delleker of Philadelphia. Lucas, during his 50 years of residence in Baltimore, established himself as a prominent citizen of that city, serving as President of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, President of the Board of School Commissioners, and as President of the Second Branch of the City Council. But it is for his important role in early American cartography that Lucas is best remembered. These maps are amongst his finest works, and they well demonstrate the quality that Lucas brought to this nascent industry. $650

Samuel Lewis. "Virginia." Philadelphia: H.C. Carey & I. Lea, 1822-27. From A Complete Historical, Chronological, and Geographical American Atlas. 12 1/4 x 18 1/4 (map); 16 1/2 x 20 1/2 (full sheet). Engraving by Young & Delleker. Full, original hand coloring. Very good condition.

In 1822, Henry Charles Carey and Isaac Lea published their American Atlas. This volume was based on Emmanuel Las Cases' Atlas Historique of 1803, with updated maps and text modified by Carey, a political economist. He considered himself an American foil to John Stuart Mill and the London economists who were proclaimers of "the gloomy science" influenced by Ricardo and Malthus. Instead of preaching overpopulation and degeneration of the human species, Carey illustrated the nations of the western hemisphere through maps that showed an expanding region with ample promise of developing into lands of great new opportunity and growth. The sheets from this atlas, which cover North America, Central America, South America and the West Indies, are comprised of an engraved map surrounded by text documenting the history, climate, population and so forth of the area depicted. The atlas is particularly known for its excellent early maps of the states and territories of the United States. Many of these maps were drawn by Fielding Lucas, Jr., an important Baltimore cartographer. All of the maps show excellent and very up-to-date detail, providing fine verbal and graphic pictures of states and territories in the early 19th century. $650

Thomas G. Bradford. "Virginia, Maryland and Delaware." From A Comprehensive Atlas. Geographical, Historical & Commercial. Boston: Wm. B. Ticknor, 1835. 7 5/8 x 10. Engraving. Original outline color. Some spotting in margins. Otherwise, very good condition.

A nice map from Boston publisher and cartographer, Thomas G. Bradford (1802-1887). Issued in 1835, Bradford’s Atlas contained maps of the different United States and other parts of the world, based on the most up-to-date information available at the time. Towns, rivers, lakes, and some orography are depicted. Counties are named and indicated with original outline color. Because Bradford continued to update his maps as he issued them in different volumes, this political information is very interesting for historic purposes. This is a good representation of American cartography in the fourth decade of the nineteenth century and an interesting document of regional history. $135

"A New Map of Virginia with its Canals, Roads & Distances...along the Stage & Steam Boat Routes." From Universal Atlas. Philadelphia: Henry Tanner, 1846. 11 1/2 x 13 3/4. Lithographic transfer from engraved plate. Full original hand color. Some typical paper toning at edges with a few minor spots. Very good condition.

A crisp, detailed map by the great American cartographer, Henry Schenck Tanner. In 1816, Henry, his brother Benjamin, John Vallance and Francis Kearny formed an engraving firm in Philadelphia. Having had experience at map engraving through his work with John Melish, Tanner conceived of the idea of compiling and publishing an American Atlas, which was begun in 1819 by Tanner, Vallance, Kearny & Co. Soon Tanner took over the project on his own, and thus began his career as cartographic publisher. The American Atlas was a huge success, and this inspired Tanner to produce his Universal Atlas, of more manageable size. This atlas contained excellent maps of each state, focusing on the transportation network, including roads, railroads and canals, as well as detailed maps of a number of cities. The maps were later purchased by S. Augustus Mitchell, and then Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co., but it is these early Tanner editions which are the rarest and most important. $375

J. Knowles Hare. "Johnson's Map of the Vicinity of Richmond, and the peninsular Campaign in Virginia. Showing also the interesting localities along the James, Chickahominty [sic] and York Rivers. Compiled from the Official Maps of the War Department." From New Illustrated Family Atlas. New York: Johnson & Ward, 1862. Stone lithograph. Original hand color. Scattered spots, but overall very good condition.

Alvin J. Johnson began publishing his New Illustrated Family Atlas in 1860 and continued to publish it through the Civil War years to 1865. Included in these atlases was a series of double page maps. This map shows detail of Civil War activity in Virginia from its tidewater region in the East, to Richmond in the West. Excellent detail of the three rivers mentioned in the title, as well as railroads, main roads and the Union Army's route of advance from Yorktown to Fair Oaks, then retreat via Charles City CH and advance to Malvern Hills, whence a retreat was then made to Harrison's Pt. & Landing. $275

S.A. Mitchell, Jr. "County Map of Virginia and West Virginia." Philadelphia: S. A. Mitchell, Jr., 1871. 11 1/2 x 14 1/4. Lithograph. Original hand color. With stain in bottom margin and chip in top margin.

S. Augustus Mitchell, Jr., of Philadelphia, was one of the largest map publishers of the middle of the nineteenth century. The firm was founded by his father, who from around the middle of the nineteenth century issued atlases and maps of all parts of the world in all formats. The Mitchell atlases contained up-to-date maps which were as attractive as they were accurate. With its bold hand-color, decorative borders, and interesting information from this interesting period of American history, this is a fine example of the Mitchell firm's output. $100

"Delaware, Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia." Philadelphia: W.M. Bradley & Bro., 1884. 16 x 22 1/2. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition.

A precisely detailed map from the Philadelphia publishing firm of William M. Bradley & Bro. 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. Topography, political information, towns, roads and physical features are all presented precisely and clearly. $150

Arbuckle Virginia
"Virginia." New York: Arbuckle Bros. Coffee Company, 1889. Ca. 3 x 5. Chromolithograph by Donaldson Brothers. Very good condition.

From a delightful series of maps issued by the Arbuckle Bros. Coffee Company. This firm was founded by John and Charles Arbuckle of Pittsburgh, PA. They developed a machine to weigh, fill, seal and label coffee in paper packages, which allowed them to become the largest importer and seller of coffee in the world. Their most famous promotional program involved the issuing of several series of small, colorful trading cards, one of which was included in every package of Arbuckle's Coffee. These series included cards with sports, food, historic scenes, and--one of the most popular--maps. The latter cards included not only a map, but also small illustrations "which portrays the peculiarities of the industry, scenery, etc." of the region depicted. These cards are a delight, containing informative maps as well as wonderful scenes of the area mapped. $60

"Virginia." From Rand-McNally Indexed Atlas of the World. Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., 1889. 19 x 26. Chromolithograph. Very good condition. With inset map of western portion of Virginia in upper left corner of map.

A late nineteenth century map from the early days of the Rand, McNally & Co. firm out of Chicago, a company that would shift the center of cartographic publishing from the east coast to the mid-west. Typical of the work from the firm, this map has good detail precisely and neatly exhibited. Topographic and social information, counties, rail lines, towns, rivers and mountains are all illustrated. Aesthetically and cartographically the quality of this map is a foreshadow of the maps of the twentieth century. $175

"Map Showing the Location of the Battlefields of Virginia compiled from Official War Records and Maps." Chesapeake and Ohio Railway Co., 1898. 20 1/4 x 24 1/4. Chromolithograph. With folds as originally issued. Faint staining upper right corner of map. Else, very good condition.

A highly detailed map that shows the Civil War battlefields in Virginia. At top right is a key indicating the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad lines before the war and after the war, other railroads during the war, plank roads, turnpikes, other roads and light houses. A most fascinating document. $325


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