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Antique Maps of Massachusetts

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Samuel Lewis. "Massachusetts." From A New and Elegant General Atlas by Aaron Arrowsmith and Samuel Lewis: Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, Petersburg and Norfolk, 1804. 7 7/8 x 9 3/4. Engraving by Tanner. Minor spotting in margins and upper left corner. Otherwise, very good condition.

The maps from this early American atlas were the works of Aaron Arrowsmith, one of the foremost cartographers of his era, and Samuel Lewis, one of the leaders in the nascent American cartographic field. This map of Massachusetts is a fine example of Lewis' output. Also of note, the map was engraved by Henry S. Tanner, who started as an engraver, but soon came to dominate the second generation of American cartographers. $150

Fielding Lucas. "Massachusetts." Philadelphia: H.C. Carey & I. Lea, 1822. 11 3/4 x 18 3/4 (map); 16 1/2 x 20 1/2 (full sheet). Engraving by J. Yeager. Full original hand color. Repaired separation along bottom half of centerfold. Else, very good condition.

In 1822, Henry Charles Carey and Isaac Lea published their A Complete Historical, Chronological, and Geographical 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. This map of Massachusetts is filled with information on towns, lakes, rivers, and some orography, all very attractively presented. The road system is clearly shown and quite impressive. $450

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SDUK. "Boston with Charlestown and Roxbury." London: Chapman & Hall, 1842. 14 1/2 x 11 1/2. Steel engraving. Original outline color. Very good condition.

A detailed and precisely drawn map of Boston by the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge (SDUK). This wonderful English enterprise was devoted to the spreading of up-to-date information and the enhancing of understanding. The Society is noted for their excellent maps, in particular their series of city maps of all parts of the world. These maps show most streets and major buildings. This map of Boston is typical of the Society's output, with clear presentation of much detail of the city. The parks, roads, docks, and roads are shown with good detail, and double lines indicate railroads coming into the city from many points. Outlying towns of Charlestown and Lechmere are separate communities as are East Boston and South Boston. A fine plan of the city from the middle of the nineteenth century. NA

H.S. Tanner. "Massachusetts and Rhode Island." From Tanner's Universal Atlas. Philadelphia: Carey & Hart, [1841]-43. 10 3/4 x 14. Engraving by J. & W.W. Warr. Full original hand color. Very good condition.

A strong and beautifully crafted map of Massachusetts and Rhode Island from the nineteenth century 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. All details are clearly presented, and these include towns, rivers, mountains, political boundaries and the transportation information. In 1844, Carey & Hart issued an edition of the atlas, and the maps were later purchased by S. Augustus Mitchell, and then Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co.. Maps from the early Tanner/Carey & Hart edition are quite rare and desirable. This map of the two states is typical of the Tanner maps. It shows excellent information, especially of the transportation network. An inset in the lower left gives a detailed plan of Boston. $325

"Massachusetts and Rhode Island." Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, 1849. 11 1/2 x 15 1/4. Lithographic transfer from engraved plate. Original hand-coloring. Very good condition. With an inset of Boston.

For much of the middle part of the nineteenth century, the Mitchell firm dominated American cartography in output and influence. S. Augustus Mitchell Jr.'s maps of the 1860s are probably the best known issues of this firm, but his father's earlier efforts are excellent maps derived from H.S. Tanner's atlas of the 1830s. This map of Massachusetts and Rhode Island is a good example of this work. Topographical information, including towns, rivers, roads, canals and railroads, is profuse and clearly shown, and the counties are shaded with contrasting pastel colors. A statistical table about the states is included, as is an inset map of Boston. It is obvious from the quality and attractive appearance of this map why Mitchell's firm became so important. $275

"Massachusetts and Rhode Island" New York: J.H. Colton, 1856. 12 3/4 x 15 3/4. Lithograph from engraved plate. Original hand-coloring. Very good condition. With inset of "Boston."

In the mid-nineteenth century, the center of map publishing in America moved from Philadelphia to New York. The Colton publishing firm played a large role in this shift. This map of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, with its fine detail, is a strong example of their successful work. Not only is it informative, with it's depictions of towns, roads and railroads but it is also decorative. The counties are depicted in subtle pastel shades and the entire map is surrounded by a decorative Victorian border. $165

G.W. & C.B. Colton. "Colton's Boston and Adjacent Cities." New York: G.W. & C.B. Colton, 1856. 14 x 11 1/4. Lithograph. Full original hand-coloring. Full margins. Smudge in bottom margin, else, very good condition.

This map of Boston, with its fine detail, is another strong example of Colton's work. The map presents the area of downtown Boston today with an inset showing the great area in contrasting pastel shades. The major mode of transportation was the new and vibrant railroad system that was growing at the time. An attractive map as well as a worthwhile historical document. $375

"Map of Massachusetts and Rhode Island." Philadelphia: Charles Desilver, 1857. 11 1/2 x 15 1/4. Lithograph. Full, original hand color. Very good condition. With inset of "Boston."

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, and especially the transportation network of roads and railroads, always the focus of the maps from this series. This map is typical of the rather unusual and scarce Desilver atlas. In the lower left is a detailed inset map of Boston, with major buildings indicated and named. An attractive and fascinating document from just before the Civil War. $165

"County Map of Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island." Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, Jr., 1872. 11 1/2 x 13 3/4. Lithograph. Original hand color. Decorative border. Very good condition.

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. $125

"Map of the Railroads of the State of Massachusetts Accompanying the Report of the Railroad Commissioners 1874." Boston: Rand, Avery, & Co. , 1874. 27 7/8 x 37 3/8. Lithograph. Uncolored. With folds as issued; minor wear along folds. Otherwise, very good condition.

A clear and striking map of Massachusetts and surrounding states, including all of Rhode Island and Connecticut as well as portions of New York (encompassing both New York City and Long Island ), New Jersey, New Hampshire, and Vermont. Detail is crisp and clear as railroad lines spread in a web across the Northeast Corridor. Each stop along the lines is clearly marked, making this an informative document of the interconnectedness of towns in southern New England. $200

"Gray's Atlas Map of Massachusetts and Rhode Island." Philadelphia: O.W. Gray & Son, ca. 1880. 12 x 15. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition.

A nicely detailed map of the state by the Philadelphia firm of O.W. Gray and Son. The firm began its publishing around mid-century and published regional and U.S. atlases up to the 1880s. This map was issued shortly after the American centennial and it is typical of their work. Though similar to the above mentioned maps in terms of information, the style is simpler than it's more decorated Victorian contemporaries. $125

"Map of the Railroads of the State of Massachusetts Accompanying the Report of the Railroad Commissioners. 1883." Boston: Wright & Potter Printing Company, 1883. 24 5/8 x 33 5/8. Wax engraving in three colors. With folds as issued. Wear along folds; else, good condition.

A fine map with great detail on the daily life facilitated by the railroad. Post offices are marked (classified by whether or not they also sold money orders), as are county towns and villages of all sizes. Using data from the 1875 census, mapmakers also noted the populations of many cities and towns throughout the state. Railroad stations are, of course, marked, and railroad lines are labeled according to the operating company. Beyond the borders of Massachusetts, railroad lines and ferry routes stretch through the states of Connecticut and Rhode Island, as well as portions of New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, and New Jersey. With inclusion of New York City and Long Island, this map provides an inter-state snapshot of rail transportation throughout the busy northeast corridor. $175


Maps from Official Topographical Atlas of Massachusetts. Philadelphia: Stedman, Brown & Lyon, 1871. Lithographs. Original hand color. Some maps with chipped corners. Very good condition, unless noted otherwise.

Double page maps. 23 x 15.

Single page maps. 13 3/4 x 11 3/4. Some maps are double sided with a map on each side, as noted.


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