Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - May - 2014 Issue

American (and a few other) Maps from High Ridge Books


Patriotic Civil War era map on High Ridge's latest catalogue.

High Ridge Books, of South Deerfield, Massachusetts, has released Catalogue 64. American Maps - 18th to 20th Centuries, Including Wall Maps, Pocket Maps, Sea Charts and More. These are primarily American maps, though Latin America, Canada, England, Europe, even Japan and Australia make an appearance. State and regional maps are common, but many cover much smaller localities, - counties, cities, and small towns. The maps are presented chronologically, starting with 1700. It ends 294 items later in 1940, though only a handful come from the 20th century. Most are from the 19th century, and as a result, railroad tracks are most often the routes displayed. That was the century that started with only water routes and rough carriage roads and ended with hundreds of railroads reaching every major city and very many rural towns as well. The 20th was the century of automobile roads, but only a couple of maps at the end display routes meant for cars. Some of these maps come from atlases or other books, but many were published as stand alone pieces, often folding maps meant for travelers, or wall maps. Here are a few of the maps to be found in this fascinating collection.


We will start with the very rare second state of a map that has achieved recognition as the first map to call the new American nation the “United States.” The first state was published with the name in 1778, while this second state comes from 1781. Now this map doesn't spell it out “United States” because it was written in French, using the French equivalent - “Etats Unis.” The title is Carte du Theatre de la Guerre actual entre les Anglais et les Trieze Colonies de l'Amerique Septrionale... That translates to “map of the theater of war between the English and the thirteen colonies of North America.” Note it says “colonies” rather than “states” as was often used at the time. However, it also describes the map's creator, J. B. Eliot, as an “Engineer of the United States,” and that is the first appearance of the new nation's correct name. Of course, the British did not recognize it as an independent nation at the time, but the French did, so it is not surprising that this first such map was printed in Paris. It is a map of the war, with events starting from Bunker Hill, and continuing until later than did the map's first state since it was updated prior to the second printing. Not on the map, but added in manuscript, is a notation about the surrender of Cornwallis at “York river.” Item 11. Priced at $18,500.


Item 34 is an interesting map, of sorts:  Comparative View of the Heights of the Principle Mountains, &c in the World. This issue is attributed to H. Morse, but is also described as a “first American” edition taken from the “last English,” which makes it appear that Morse borrowed the earlier work. It is a print in the format of a wall map, but it displays various mountain ranges from around the world in scale, so one can compare the heights of the mountains. Nearly 200 mountains are depicted. $2,350.


Item 107 is the 1845 edition of the Map of the World on Mercator's Projection, by S. Augustus Mitchell, published in Philadelphia. For whatever reason, the map includes an inset of New South Wales. There are a couple of interesting features in North America which apply specifically to this time. One pertains to Texas. It is shown as an independent nation. That existed for only a dozen years, though not everyone (Mexico in particular) recognized that independent status. The other shows Oregon extending as far north as 54” 40'. This latitude forms what was the boundary between Oregon and Russian Alaska by treaty between Britain and Russia. The bigger question was who owned Oregon, as both the United States and England claimed ownership. There were voices in America calling for the nation to go to war with England over Oregon all the way north to 54” 40', but President Polk was more intent on expanding into Mexican territory and did not want to start two wars at once. As a result, England and America finally agreed on a boundary at the 49th parallel, leaving England with what is now British Columbia. $3,750.


This next map is notable for the unusual names as well as borders. Item 177 is the Johnson & Browning New Illustrated & Embellished...Map of the Republic, dated 1860. It shows a proposed “State of Jefferson or Colona” for what is today Colorado. Residents of the area had actually claimed the area as the Territory of Jefferson, carved out primarily from western Kansas, after the Gold Rush began. However, the U.S. never recognized it. Once the Kansas Territory, east of the current eastern border of Colorado, was granted admittance to the Union as a free state after the beginning of the Civil War, the land was officially declared the Territory of Colorado, becoming a state in 1876. The map also shows a territory of Shoshone in what is today southern Idaho and western Wyoming, and an east-west, rather than north-south, border between New Mexico and Arizona. $7,500.


The item you see on the catalogue's cover is a Civil War era map, circa 1862, The New Naval and Military Map of the United States, by J. Calvin Smith. This is a patriotic Union map, featuring three battle scenes and a panoramic view of Washington. Around the borders are portraits of various Union military leaders, President Lincoln and his cabinet. Offered is a rare second state of the map which added to the number of portraits. This map also features one of the earliest appearances of Idaho, which includes all of the current state plus parts of Wyoming and Montana. Item 190. $8,750.


High Ridge Books may be contacted at 914-967-3332 or info@highridgebooks.com. Their website is www.highridgebooks.com.

Rare Book Monthly

  • <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 7. Ritter's unusual sun-dial world map, 1607. Est. $3500 to $4500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 16. Fascinating Japanese satirical map published prior to WWII, 1932. Est. $1400 to $2000
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 30. Newton's 2" miniature terrestrial globe, 1833. Est. $3500 to $4500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 318. Braun & Hogenberg's first plan of Moscow in contemporary color, 1575. Est. $2750 to $3500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 346. One of the most decorative 18th century maps of Malta, 1680. Est. $1200 to $1500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 412. The first printed map devoted to the Pacific in full contemporary color, 1589. Est. $8000 to $10000
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 425. Rare set of celebrated explorers of the New World, 1592. Est. $1900 to $2300
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 436. Two superb miniature atlases bound in one volume with 98 maps, 1682. Est. $5500 to $7500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 445. Part IV of de Bry's "Grand Voyages" by Girolamo Benzoni, 1613. Est. $2000 to $2500
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 447. Tallis' "History of the United States of America" in six volumes, 1850. Est. $1500 to $1800
    <b>Old World Auctions (March 21-28):</b> Lot 448. Mallet's miniature military masterpiece, 1672. Est. $1400 to $1700
  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Malcolm X, Autograph Letter Signed, from prison, 1950. $20,000 to $30,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Letter from Moses Walker, an enslaved Georgia man, to his mother at another plantation, 1854. $12,000 to $18,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Signed cabinet card of Frederick Douglass, albumen photograph, Boston, circa 1879. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Placard from the Memphis Sanitation Worker's strike, 1968. $10,000 to $15,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b><br><i>The North Star,</i> volume 1, issue 27, Rochester, NY, 1848. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Hand-tinted tintype of John Brown, circa 1860. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29: Printed & Manuscript African Americana</b>
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster signed & inscribed by Huey Newton, circa 1967. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Album of aerial views of the march on Montgomery, taken by federal troops, 1965. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Mar 29:</b> Poster for the SNCC, photograph by Danny Lyon featuring John Lewis, circa 1962. $3,000 to $4,000.
  • <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> BEETHOVEN, LUDWIG VAN. Autograph Manuscript sketch-leaf part of the score of the Scottish Songs, "Sunset" Op. 108 no 2. [Vienna, February 1818]. Inscribed by Alexander Wheelock Thayer. $80,000 to $120,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> Violin belonging to Albert Einstein, presented to him by Oscar H. Steger, 1933. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Autograph Letter Signed ("Papa") to his son Hans Albert, discussing his involvement with the atomic bomb, September 2, 1945. $100,000 to $150,000
    <b>Bonhams: Fine Books and Manuscripts. March 9, 2018</b>
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> HAMILTON, ALEXANDER. Autograph Letter Signed, to Baron von Steuben, with extensive notes of Von Steuben's aide Benjamin Walker, June 12, 1780. $10,000 to $15,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> NEWTON, ISAAC. Autograph Manuscript in Latin, being detailed instructions on making the philosopher's stone. 8 pp. 1790s. $200,000 to 300,000
    <b>Bonhams, Mar. 9:</b> 1869 Inauguration Bible of President Ulysses S. Grant. $80,000 to $120,000
  • <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Charles Darwin on sexuality and the transmission of hereditary characteristics: Autograph Letter Signed to Lawson Tait. Down, 17 January [1877].
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> MILTON, JOHN. <i>Paradise Lost. A Poem written in ten books.</i> London: 1667. A very rare example with the contemporary binding untouched and with a 1667 title page.
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> Hamilton secures the ratification of the Constitution: <i>The Debates and Proceedings of the Convention of the State of New-York, assembled at Poughkeespsie, on the 17th June, 1788.</i>
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> The social contract “Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains”: ROUSSEAU, JEAN-JACQUES. <i>Principes du Droit Politique [Du Contract Social]</i>. Amsterdam: Michel Rey, 1762
    <b>19th Century Shop:</b> “The first English textbook on geometrical land-measurement and surveying”: BENESE, RICHARD. <i>This Boke Sheweth the Maner of Measurynge All Maner of Lande…</i>
  • <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Jenner (Rev. George Charles). <i>The Evidence at Large...Respecting Dr Jenner's Discovery of Vaccine Inoculation,</i> presentation copy from Edward Jenner to Rev. Rowland Hill, 1805. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Houdini (Harry).- Maggi (Girolamo). <i>De tintinnabulis liber postumus...de equuleo liber,</i> Harry Houdini's copy, Amsterdam, H. Wetstein, 1689. £600 to £800
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Meyer (Henry Leonard). Coloured Illustrations of British Birds, and their Eggs , 7 vol. in 2 plus Illustrations of British Birds, 4 vol., 1842-50 and [1835-51]. £5,000 to £7,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Dickens (Charles). <i>An Entirely New Romantic Drama, in Three Acts, by Mr. Wilkie Collins, called The Frozen Deep,</i> 1857. £3,000 to £4,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Lighthouses and Islands of Ireland, c. 125 drawings, 1867. £6,000 to £8,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Shelley (Lady Jane). Diary, 1853 & 1860. £1,500 to £2,000
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Scottish Binding.- The Holy Bible, Containing the Old and New Testaments, bound in contemporary brown polished calf decorated with the figure of a Chinese spearman, by ?James Scott of Edinburgh, 1778. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Greene (Graham). <i>The Man Within,</i> first edition, signed by the author, 1929. £4,000 to £6,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Mellan (Claude, 1598-1688). The Holy Face, or the Veil of St Veronica, [c. 1649 and later]. £800 to £1,200
    <b>Forum Auctions: Fine Books, Manuscripts and Works on Paper. March 22, 2018</b>
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Desaguliers (John Theophilus). <i>A Dissertation concerning Electricity,</i> W. Innys, and T. Longman, 1742. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Le Jeune (Paul). <i>Relation de se qui s'est passé en la Nouvelle France en l'anné 1636 enuoyée au R.Pere Provincial de la Compagnie de Iesus en la Province de France,</i> 1637. £2,000 to £3,000
    <b>Forum Auctions, Mar. 22:</b> Stumpf (Johann Rudolph). <i>Gemeiner loblicher Eydgnoschafft Stetten, Landen und Völckern Chronicwirdiger thaaten beschreibung, </i> Zurich, Froschauer, 1586. £3,000 to £4,000

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