Rare 1811 Linen Printed Louisiana Territory Map Highlights New Acquisitions at Boston Rare Maps

  • SOUTHAMPTON, Massachusetts
  • /
  • January 14, 2013

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"North America from the most Authentic and Latest Surveys" by R. Gray. Published Glasgow, 1811. Engraving in sepia ink on linen, 15 x 21 inches.

Boston Rare Maps, one of the country’s premier specialists in rare and unusual antique maps, announces the acquisition of a number of exciting new pieces, among them a rare linen-printed 1811 map that depicts the short-lived state of “Franklin.”  Additional works include a charming map of Lake Champlain printed in America during the Revolutionary War, the first-ever printed chart of Boston Harbor, and a mammoth hand-drawn map of North America’s west coast.  For additional information or to view the selection online, please visit www.BostonRareMaps.com or call (413) 527-4020.

Highlighting this selection of new acquisitions is a rare map of North America, printed on linen by mapmaker R. Gray.  Gray’s 1811 map is based on Robert Wilkinson’s important, unusual and rare North America, which was first published in London in 1804. Wilkinson’s was the first printed map to show the entire Louisiana Territory incorporated into the United States and also depicted the short-lived state of “Franklin” between North Carolina and Tennessee. Gray followed Wilkinson’s work closely, though he simplified the toponymy to allow for the limitations of printing on fabric. He also added an ornate decorative border to the piece, rendering the map far more attractive than the prototype.  Gray’s map is surpassingly rare, and this is only the third known example.

Also on offer is a “Map of the Present Seat of War on the Borders of Canada,” depicting a region encompassing Lake George, Lake Champlain and the upper St. Lawrence River.  The map illustrates the fastest and only water-based link between Quebec and the interior of the thirteen American colonies, a route prized for its strategic import.

It originally appeared in October 1775 issue of The Pennsylvania Magazine, the sole periodical published in America during the Revolution.  Several issues of the magazine included engraved maps illustrating early Revolutionary battles and theatres of conflict, and this map printed by Robert Aitken is one of the rarest and most appealing.  

An 1889 chart of America’s west coast is also featured.  This manuscript by New Hampshire native John Tilton McClintock depicts the northwest coast from the Alaska panhandle to Tillamook County, Oregon. The son of an expert surveyor and himself a future architect, McClintock—in his late teens at the time—was already an accomplished draftsman. His map shows the complex coastal outline and the region’s many islands, indicates the many mountains and mountain ranges, names major geographical features and towns, and outlines county boundaries in Oregon and Washington.  The intent of the map appears to have been to illustrate or memorialize a round-trip journey from Puget Sound to Glacier Bay for the benefit of friends or family back home. The voyage track is shown in red ink, with a few July dates indicated in Alaska, apparently the dates of landfall at different ports of call. 

"I'm delighted to bring this latest selection of material to market," comments Michael Buehler, owner of Boston Rare Maps.  "Our goal is to identify and make available some of the most rare, interesting and historically significant American maps and prints, and these fine examples meet that standard."

A number of additional maps are also featured in Boston Rare Maps latest acquisitions and are available for view at www.BostonRareMaps.com.  Boston Rare Maps will also participate in the upcoming Miami International Map Fair, which features over 40 premier map dealers from around the world and takes place February 2-3, 2013.

About Boston Rare Maps

Boston Rare Maps specializes in rare and unusual antique and vintage maps depicting all periods of American history.  They offer American historical prints, city views and a growing selection of illustrated broadsides.  They also serve a wide variety of clients, including private collectors and institutional map collections, as well as those seeking just a few special pieces for themselves or as gifts to clients, friends or family. 

Editor’s Note:  • Background and additional digital color images available.

   • Support for feature development on rare maps available.

   • Interviews with gallery owner Michael Buehler are encouraged.

Jenna Llewellyn
Fusco & Four/Ventures LLC

Fusco & Four/Ventures, LLC
8 Allenwood Street
Boston, Massachusetts
About Fusco & Four/Ventures, LLC

Founded in 1979 by principals Tony Fusco and Robert Four, Fusco & Four is a full-service Marketing and Public Relations agency, specializing in the arts, lifestyle, leisure and luxury clients. The agency has worked with more than 300 arts-related clients over the past 30 years, including museums, classical music groups, galleries, auction houses, show promoters, internationally-known brands and Internet-based companies in the arts and antiques field. Fusco & Four also produces three annual art and design shows in Boston: the Boston International Fine Art Show, AD 20/21: Art & Design of the 20th & 21st Centuries, and The Ellis Boston Antiques Show. Please direct inquiries to Tony Fusco.

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