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Antique Maps of Montana

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Northern Plains 1863
"Johnson's Nebraska, Dakota, Colorado, Idaho & Kansas." New York: Johnson & Ward, 1863. 12 3/4 x 15 1/2. Lithograph. Original hand coloring. Very good condition.

A detailed map of northern plain states (present-day Kansas, Nebraska,Colorado, the Dakotas, Wyoming and Montana). This map shows a configuration of this region which lasted only for one year. In 1863,the eastern part of Washington Territory and the western part of Dakota Territory were broken off to form the Idaho Territory, encompassing what today is Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. The next year the eastern part of this huge Idaho Territory, that shown here, was broken off to create the Montana Territory, with the southeastern part temporarily going back into the Dakota Territory. The detail in this map is most impressive, showing rivers, towns, forts, Indian tribes, and the early trails which criss-crossed this region. This map was issued during the Pike's Peak gold rush, so the four main routes to "Auroria" are shown, the distances of the northern and southern-most routes noted on the map. The gold rush towns of Auraria, Denver, and Montana are all shown, though the first two had by then merged into Denver. $250

Northern Plains 1870
"County Map of Dakota, Wyoming, Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado." Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, Jr., 1870. 20 x 14 3/4. Lithograph. Original hand color. Very good condition.

This map shows the northern plains at a time when the railroads were opening up the region to new settlement. Completed in 1869, the transcontinental railroad ran across the center of the area shown here, from Omaha to the South Pass in western Wyoming. The railroads facilitated the movement of emigrants through and into this area--already begun by the emigration to Oregon, the California Gold Rush and Pike's Peak Gold Rush(noted on this map as "Gold Region"). This led to the creation of new states, such as Kansas (1861), Nebraska (1867), as well as territories such as Colorado, Dakota, Montana, and the just created Wyoming (1869).

This detailed map provides a good topographical picture of the region, with the rivers and mountains depicted, as are the locations of the plains Indian tribes which played such an important (and tragic) role in the opening of the west. The maps also well represents the development of this region, picturing towns, forts, roads and trails. Of particular interest is the depiction of the railroads, which are indicated sometimes following the early routes of explorers, also shown on the map. The Union Pacific Railroad, completed just the year before this map was published, is shown running through Nebraska to Cheyenne and then west, while the two railroads into Denver-one to Cheyenne to meet the Union Pacific and one directly east to Kansas City-both completed just the year this map was issued, are both shown. This is a fine map of the classic "Wild West" of popular lore. $250

Idaho, Montana and Wyoming
Frank A. Gray. "Gray's Idaho, Montana and Wyoming." Philadelphia: O.W. Gray & Son, 1879. 12 x 14 3/4. Lithograph. Original color. Very good condition.

A nicely detailed and early map of the northwestern part of the United States by the Philadelphia firm of O.W. Gray. The firm began its publishing around mid-century and published regional and U.S. atlases up to the 1880s, first as O.W. Gray and then O.W. Gray & Son. This map is typical of their work, presenting the latest information available with clear and precise detail. The three territories are shown as they were originally set up in 1868; they would not be admitted as states for another decade. Detail includes topography, rivers, settlements, Indian tribes and even the early railroads both in Montana and Wyoming. Of particular interest is the depiction of Yellowstone Park, established just seven years earlier. For its attractive presentation and interesting detail make it a nice example of late nineteenth century American cartography. $225

Arbuckle Montana
"Montana." 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

"Montana." Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., 1909. 19 x 26. Cereograph with printed color. Very good condition.

Highly detailed and with a listing in red of the railroad lines in the state. $175

Rand folding Montana
"The Rand-McNally Vest Pocket Map of Montana." Chicago: Rand, McNally & Co., 1919. 18 3/4 x 25 1/2. Separately issued folding map, with original paper covers and advertising. Cerograph. Full original color. Full margins. Repaired tear along one fold. Otherwise, excellent condition.

An early twentieth century map from the Rand, McNally & Co. firm primarily out of Chicago, a company that would shift the center of cartographic publishing from the east coast to the mid-west. This is a "vest pocket map" meant to be sold to travelers, as indicated by the advertisements for Chicago and New York businesses. The map has impressive topographical and transportation detail and it is essentially the same map as was issued in the Rand McNally New Commercial Atlas, but modified to be of more use to travelers. In particular, the railroads, electric lines, and combined steam and electric lines are identified by the use of red stamped numbers explained in a key in the lower right and the small size made the map most useful to put in one's vest pocket. $300


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