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Antique Maps of Arizona

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Macomb four corners
F.W. von Egloffstein after surveys by John N. Macomb. "Map of Explorations and Surveys in New Mexico and 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

Grand Canyon
George M. Wheeler. "Map Showing Routes of the River and Land Parties Engaged in Exploring the Grand Cañon of the Colorado." Washington: U.S. Army, [1871]-1878. 15 x 16. Tinted photolithograph. With some wear at folds and along left margin. Old repairs on back and along left edge. Overall, good condition. Wheat: 1292. Denver.

A highly detailed, topographical map of the Grand Canyon and surrounding region drawn by P.W. Hamel ad L. Nell under the command of Lieutenant George M. Wheeler, who led a number of expeditions in the area from 1869 to 1871. In 1872, the U.S. Congress authorized a plan to survey the United States west of the 100th meridian and map it at a scale of 8 miles to the inch. Wheeler was put in charge of this huge task, not only charged with the survey, but also to determine the physical nature of the lands, including its mineral and economic potential, and to describe the Native Americans there. This map is one of the resulting maps, issued in 1878, showing the Grand Canyon and surrounding lands in Arizona. Its focus is on the incredible topography of the region, but the map also details wagon roads and trails, passes, settlements and other features of interest. $325

Gray Arizona and New Mexico
"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

Maps from George M. Wheeler's U.S. Geographical Surveys West of the 100th Meridian. Drawn by Weyss, Herman & Lang. Washington: GPO, 1876. Photo-Lithographs. 15 x 20 1/4. Very good condition, except as noted. Denver.

In 1872, the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers began the immense project of mapping the United States "West of the 100th Meridian" on a large scale, a program expected to take 15 years. Lieutenant George Wheeler, who had run surveys in Arizona and New Mexico in 1871, was chosen to head this project, leading to yearly surveys of the American West between 1872 and 1878, at which time Congress stopped appropriations because of cost and possible duplication. These maps are from Wheeler's atlas of sheets showing the incredible work which resulted. The detail is amazing, especially given the rough terrain depicted, with that topography shown graphically with hatchuring. The routes of various expeditions noted.

Mitchell Arizona and New Mexico 1880
"County and Township Map of Arizona and New Mexico." From Mitchell's New General Atlas.. Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, Jr., 1880. 13 7/8 x 21 1/2. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition.

Originally part of Mexico, the area shown here was acquired by the United States at the end of the Mexican War in 1848 and became the New Mexico Territory in 1850. In 1861, a Confederate State of Arizona was formed of the southern part of area shown here, but Union forces put an end to that in 1862. In 1863, the original New Mexico Territory was split, this time on a north-south axis, with the western part becoming the Arizona Territory. Both territories became states in 1912. This map shows Arizona just after the Desert Land Act of 1877, which caused a flood of new settlement into the territory. This was a period when the General Land Office was doing much surveying in this area, so there was an increase in accurate information about the topography and social features such as towns and roads, all clearly presented on this excellent map. $165

Rand McNally Arizona
"Map of Arizona." Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., ca. 1885. 19 1/4 x 13 1/8. Cerograph. Full original color. Very good condition. Denver.

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 firm's work, this map has very good detail, precisely and neatly exhibited. Social information, counties, roads, and much more is neatly illustrated. The firm is known for being able to depict copious data in a clear manner, and on this map that is well demonstrated by the depiction of the impressive topography of the state. Aesthetically and cartographically, it foreshadows the maps of the twentieth century. On Approval VLS

Arbuckle Arizona
"Arizona." 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. $65

GoMaps of the "horizontal" territory of Arizona
GoMaps of Western America and the New Mexico Territory


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