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Maps of Western America
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Henry S. Tanner. "Mexico & Guatemala." Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, 1846. 12 3/4 x 14 3/4. Lithographic transfer from engraved plate. Original color. Some typical paper toning. Very good condition. Wheat: 519.

An excellent map of Mexico by the great American cartographer, Henry Schenck Tanner. The map shows Mexico at the beginning of the Mexican-American War, during which the country lost its northern provinces to the United States. In that region, the detail in New Mexico, along the Rio Grande to north of Santa Fe, is quite accurate, but the information in Upper California is not so correct. Texas is shown as part of the United States, having just been annexed the year before this map was issued. This map came from the final edition of Tanner's atlas before Mitchell, the publisher, made the atlas his own. $475

After H.S. Tanner. "Mexico & Guatemala." From S. Augustus Mitchell's A New Universal Atlas. Philadelphia: H.N. Burroughs, 1847. 11 7/8 x 15. Lithograph transfer from engraved plate. Full original hand color. Some paper toning at edges and a few small stains in margins. Otherwise, very good condition.

In 1846, S. Augustus Mitchell took over publication of H.S. Tanner's Universal Atlas, continuing the run of this important atlas. This is the second state of Mitchell's version of the Tanner map. The year he took over Tanner's atlas (1846), he reissued Tanner's map and then, the same year, issued a version with the copyright date changed to 1846, but all else the same. The next year Mitchell further modified the map by removing Tanner's name and adding some updated information, especially in northern Mexico. The geography of this region is much better depicted, with the mountains surrounding the Great Basin drawn, which had the desired effect of getting rid of the non-existent rivers that had appeared on the earlier edition of this map. Political changes are also shown, for the northern half of the Mexican state of Sonora was detached, becoming part of a large area newly labeled "Upper or New California." This entire region, along with New Mexico, would within a short time of the publication of this map become part of the United States at the settlement of the Mexican-American War. Also to this version Mitchell added a number of roads in the region, including one from Mexico across Texas to Nacodoches. $475

Oregon and California
S. Augustus Mitchell. "Oregon and Upper California. Published by S. Augustus Mitchell . . . 1848." From A New Universal Atlas. Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, 1848. 17 x 13 3/4. Lithograph transfer from engraved plate. Full original hand color. With manuscript line and text indicating "Humbolt's River." Some light staining; otherwise, very good condition.

A fine pre-Gold Rush map of the westernmost United States in the mid-nineteenth century, showing the region at an interesting period in its history. The map is filled with myriad topographical details, including rivers, towns, and separate coloring for the territories. At the time there were only two territories, Oregon and Upper California, in the region later divided into Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Utah and Arizona. This map is also fascinating in its depiction of the early exploration and development of the region. The "Great Interior Basin," between the Great Salt Lake and the Sierra Nevada Mountains is shown as unexplored, though Fremont's route to its southeast is noted. Early settlements and a coastal road are shown in California , and the old trail between Santa Fe and Los Angeles is also indicated. Of particular note is the prominent depiction of the Oregon Trail, shown snaking from present-day Colorado to the Columbia River. Locations of myriad Indian tribes throughout the region are noted. The map was copyrighted by H.N. Burroughs and published by S. Augustus Mitchell, whose firm dominated American cartography in output and influence for much of the middle part of the nineteenth century. It is obvious from the quality and attractive appearance of this map why Mitchell's firm became so important. This map, one of the best of the region issued in mid-century, went through many different versions from it's first appearance in 1846 until the late 1850s. With the discovery of gold just one year in the future, this map shows the American west on the eve of the huge development to follow. $850

Sidney Hall. "Mexico, California & Texas." Edinburgh: A. & C. Black, ca. 1849. 10 1/4 x 14 1/2. Engraving by S. Hall. Original color. Light spot in map. Very good condition. Inset in lower left of "Guatimala."

An interesting map of Mexico and the American southwest issued in Edinburgh about 1849. Details of topography and settlements are shown throughout, and roads and political divisions are also indicated. This map was issued after the Mexican-American war, so Texas, New Mexico, Utah, and California are all shown as part of the United States. In Utah, Salt Lake City is shown on the Great Salt Lake, with the note that it is a "Mormon Set." Throughout the region are indications of Indian tribes. Overall, this is an interesting and up-to-date mapping of this region at an important period in its history. $375

Cowperthwait western territories
"Map of the State of California, The Territories of Oregon & Utah, and the chief part of New Mexico." From Universal Atlas. Philadelphia: Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co., [1850]-1851. Copyright, H.B. Burroughs, 1845. 15 1/2 x 12 7/8. Lithographic transfer from an engraved plate. Original hand color. Full margins. Very good condition.

A mid-century map of the western part of the United States, one of the first maps to show the state of California and the territories of Utah and New Mexico. The map is an updated version of a map that appeared in S. Augustus Mitchell's Universal Atlas of 1849. The southern part of the region shown in that map, "Upper California," had just been won from Mexico in 1848, and Mitchell's map was important for presenting the vast new U.S. territories to the American public. In 1850, the rights to Mitchell's atlas were sold to the firm of Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co., which reissued the atlas with some updating. That year the newly acquired lands were divided by Congress into the state of California and two territories, Utah and New Mexico; Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co. revised the Mitchell map accordingly.

Besides the new political information that appeared on this map, what had appeared on the 1849 map as the "Great Interior Basin" is now somewhat filled in based on Fremont's map, renamed "Fremont Basin." Other topographical features included considerable orography, rivers, and lakes. The Great Salt Lake is shown, next to which is "Salt Lake City. Mormon Set.," which had just been settled in 1847. Early settlements and a coastal road are illustrated in California, and the old Spanish trail between Santa Fe and Los Angeles is also indicated. Of further interest is the prominent depiction of the Oregon Trail, shown snaking from present-day Colorado to the Columbia River. The entire region north of Utah and California appears as the Oregon Territory, which it remained until the Washington Territory was created in 1853. Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co. continued to revise this map, for in 1851 they came out with a further up-dated map retitled "A New Map of the State of California," and with more information provided on the counties of the territories and state. This is a fascinating and historical important map, one of the first to show the new political situation in the west after the Compromise of 1850. $875

Meyers western US
"A New Map of the State of California, The Territories of Oregon & Utah. Compiled after the best authorities." From Meyer's Hand-Atlas. Hildburghausen: Bibliographic Institution, 1852. 15 1/4 x 12 1/4. Engraving by E. Biedermann. Original color. Very good condition.

A very detailed map of the western United States showing the political situation there just after the middle of the nineteenth century. With the official acquisition of Oregon Territory (1846) and the Mexican Cession (1848), the California Gold Rush (1849) and the admittance of California as a state and the creation of Utah and New Mexico territories (1850), the American West was of great interest to Americans and others around the world. Thus it was that most atlases included a map of this region, of which this is the one that appeared in Meyer's Hand-Atlas in 1852. About 1833 Joseph Meyer had founded the Bibliographischen Institut in Hildburghausen, which issued geographical works, and in 1849 he sent his son, Herrmann, to set up the North American branch of the Bibliographic Instituion. In the 1840s and early 1850s this business published their well respected Hand-Atlas.

Their maps were known for their precise detail and this is a good example of their output. This map contains much the same information as the S. Augustus Mitchell maps which began in the mid-1840s, but with some differences, especially in California where this map has especially good detail. Throughout are shown rivers, mountains, Indian tribes, and settlements of all sizes. This map also shows a number of trails, including the Lewis & Clark's canoe route, Fremont's route of exploration, the Oregon Trail and the Great Spanish Trail. A nicely colored inset in the lower left is of San Francisco and environs. An excellent cartographic picture of the American West at a transformative period in its history. $675

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