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19th Century maps of Regions of the United States


[ Maps of Western America | 18th century regional maps ]
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From Michel-Guillaume Saint Jean De Crevecoeur's Voyage dans la Haute Pennsylvanie. Paris: Crapelet, 1801. Engravings by P.F. Tardieu. Folds as issued. Very good condition.

Detailed maps of regions of the United States issued just at the beginning of the nineteenth century. These maps were made to accompany Crevecoeur's work on his travels through the United States. Of particular note are the many roads cris-crossing the region, presenting an important aspect of economic, military, and social life of the period. Wonderful maps from the nascent days of the United States.

"The Eastern States with Part of Canada." from Brooke's General Gazetteer Improved. Philadelphia & Richmond: Johnson & Warner, 1812. 7 1/2 x 9 1/2. Engraving. Trimmed to top neatline. A few minor stains. Else very good condition.

A map from a series of four regional maps from Dr. R. Brooke's gazetteer of the world. Detail focuses on rivers and state or territorical borders. Major towns and topographical features are also given. An interesting example of early American cartography, showing from Pennsylvania to the "District of Maine", as well as the surrounding regions of Canada. $225



"The State of Tennessee." Philadelphia: M. Carey, 1814. 9 5/8 x 20 1/2. Engraving. Original outline color. Full margins. A few light spots on centerfold. A small replaced section in bottom right corner, far from printed surface. Otherwise, very good condition.

An early map of Tennessee by Mathew Carey, one of the seminal figures in early American Cartography. Published shortly after the War of 1812, this map is from Carey's Atlas which represented the best American cartographic work of the period. This map is a fine example of Carey's work, showing the development of the state at an early stage. Topographical information portrayed includes towns, rivers, mountains, major roads, and backwoods trails. Longitude is given with a prime meridian at Philadelphia, as befits a map by the first American cartographic publisher. Overall, an most desirable map of Tennessee. $1,500



Melish: Southern U.S.
John Melish. "A Map of the Southern Section of the United States including the Floridas & Bahama islands, Shewing the Seat of War in that Department." From A Military and Topographical Atlas of the United States. Philadelphia: J. Melish, [March 1813-]1816. 16 x 20 (neat lines). Engraving by Henry S. Tanner. Strong impression. Original hand color. Light stain from old hinge on verso. Otherwise, very good condition.

John Melish was the first American publisher to issue exclusively cartographic and geographic items. Born in Scotland and involved in the textile industry, Melish visited the United States several times beginning in 1806, finally deciding to settle here in 1811. Melish had made many notes on his travels about the country and in 1812 he published Travels in the United States of America, which included his first maps and which started him on his cartographic career. Melish came to dominate the industry in this country, and had a huge impact on all subsequent American mapping. It is Melish who brought American cartography up to world standards, and his maps clearly bespeak the quality of his work.

This map shows the United States from the Ohio River to Florida, and as far west as the Missouri Territory. This was the scene of much of the later action in the war, including the Battle of New Orleans. Rivers, lakes, political borders, towns, and roads--including distances along them--are precisely detailed. Also noted are Indian tribes, marshes, early settlements on the frontier and notes on navigation. The rendering of the political information is of particular note, with the Mississippi Territory including present-day Alabama and Mississippi, and the Missouri Territory comprising all west of the Mississippi outside of Louisiana (the latter shown with an interesting shape). In the lower left is a statistical table with the size and population of each region depicted and in the lower right are shown the Bahama Islands. This is a scarce, decorative and historically fascinating map by the premier American cartographer of his day. $2,200



Thompson Southeast
John Thomson. "Southern Provinces of the United States." From A New General Atlas. Edinburgh: J. Thomson, 1817. 19 1/2 x 23 1/4. Engraving by Hewitt. Full original hand color. Full margins. Very good condition. Inset view of "Characteristic Scenery of the Hudson River."

In the early nineteenth century, the British cartographic publishers were producing the finest maps in the world. John Thomson, working in Edinburgh, was one of the leading British cartographers and his maps are good evidence of the quality of work issued in Great Britain at the time. This striking map of the southeastern U.S. is an particularly good example of his work. It was issued at an interesting period in the history of the American southeast. The state of Georgia is of particular note, for its borders are shown as they were in 1798 just before the Mississippi Territory was established, extending from the Atlantic to the Mississippi. It is not unusual for a British map maker to be late in reflecting internal American information on his maps, but the nearly twenty year lapse here makes one wonder whether Thomson was in fact a Georgian chauvinist. While somewhat anachronistic, the information of settlements, rivers, mountains, and ethnological details is fascinating. Overall, a fine map of the American southeast. $1,200



Arkansas Territory
Stephen H. Long. "Map of Arkansa and other Territories of the United States." Philadelphia: H.C. Carey & I. Lea, 1822. 14 1/2 x 14 1/2 (map); 16 1/2 x 20 3/4 (full sheet). Engraving by Young & Delleker. Original outline color. Very good condition. Denver.

In 1822, Henry Charles Carey and Isaac Lea published their A Complete Historical, Chronological, and Geographical American Atlas. 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. The most important map in the atlas, is the "Map of Arkansa and other Territories of the United States," a seminal map of the trans-Mississippi West. This is a "mother map" of that part of the United States, consisting of the lands of the Louisiana Purchase north of the state of Louisiana.

This map was based on a manuscript map by Stephen Long drawn in 1821, the first to show the results of his important exploration of the American West from 1819-20. It appeared a year before Long's official report and the map contained therein. Long explored the region between the Missouri River and the Rockies, including the Platte, Red and Canadian Rivers, and his map is a precise statement of the results of his travels. Of particular importance was the first mention of the "Great American Desert" (that is the High Plains), called this by Long to emphasize his belief in the inhabitability of the region; this moniker greatly inhibited settlement of the west for over a generation.

This map was praised by Carl Wheat as a distinct step forward in mapping the American West. It includes an early depiction of the Arkansas Territory, extending from the Mississippi to the Spanish Territories of New Mexico, and it also is the first to show Missouri as a state, which it became as part of the Missouri Compromise of 1820. Long explored along the South Branch of the Platte River, shown for the first time on this map, and he depicts for the first time Long's Peak, called "Highest Peak" on this map. Members of Long's party, including Dr. Edwin James, were the first to climb Pike's Peak, which Long named "James Peak" on this map, though the name never stuck. $1,650
GoGo to page with other maps from the Carey & Lea Atlas



Mouth of the Columbia River
Philippe Vander Maelen. [Mouth of the Columbia River] Amerique Septentrionale; No. 38. From Atlas Universel. Brussels: P. Vander Maelen, 1827. 18 x 19. Lithograph by H. Ode. Original outline hand coloring. Very good condition.

A finely executed and very detailed map from Vander Maelen's monumental atlas of 1827, the Atlas Universel. This atlas was one of the most remarkable world atlases ever produced, anticipating the International Map of the World and being the first atlas to show the entire land mass of the world on a uniform scale. The entire atlas consisted of 400 maps drawn on a scale of ca. 1:1.6 million, with as precise and accurate information as was then available. This atlas was also the first to be made totally with lithography, each map precisely drawn by H. Ode. This map shows Mississippi and the surrounding regions of Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Alabama. Information includes towns, rivers and lakes, roads, and topography. An interesting map of a quality well before its time. $500

Other maps available from Vander Maelen's Atlas Universel. All are 18 x 19" lithographs by H. Ode with outline color, in very good to excellent condition unless noted otherwise.




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©The Philadelphia Print Shop, Ltd. Last updated February 19, 2014