Maps of America, Salt Lake City, the Battle of Gettysburg, and Arabia from Neatline Antique Maps

- by Michael Stillman

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Maps of America, Salt Lake City, the Battle of Gettysburg, and Arabia from Neatline Antique Maps

Neatline Antique Maps of San Francisco has issued their Spring Catalogue 2019. It is divided into two parts. The first is called An Expanding Nation: Five Exceptional 19th Century Maps of the United States. These are maps that show the nation expanding, first in the East, then the West. They are either full U. S. maps or cover half of the country, east or west. The second part offers three separate collections. One is focused on 19th century Salt Lake City, the next on the Battle of Gettysburg, and the third on maps of Arabia. Here is a little more detail.

 

Among the U. S. maps is A New Map of Texas Oregon and California with the Regions Adjoining, the work of Samuel Augustus Mitchell of Philadelphia in 1846. This was a time of rapid change, or soon would be, in the American West. The Mexican War had begun, which would change the landscape of the Southwest. Meanwhile, America reached a treaty with Britain that year that would set the boundaries in the Northwest. This was all about to happen, but had not quite yet happened in 1846. Texas had just been entered into the Union in late December 1845, but its boundaries were still uncertain. New or Upper California encompassed not only today's California, but Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and much of New Mexico. There is a Salt Lake, but no Salt Lake City. The Mormons were just starting to head west. Brigham Young attempted to obtain copies of this pocket map for directions. California was still part of Mexico at the time. To its north lies Oregon, which covers today's Oregon, Washington, and much of British Columbia. That year, the boundary between the U. S. and Canada would be set at the current boundary between Washington and British Columbia. To the east is a thin strip of land followed by Texas, whose border is the Rio Grande, all the way to its headwaters. So, Santa Fe is in Texas, or at least Texans so claimed. Texas then continues in a thin strip north all the way to Wyoming along the west side of the Colorado Rockies. It then meets up with the edge of Indian Territory to the north, much larger than today's Oklahoma. It is bordered to its north by the Missouri Territory, extending to Canada. Within four years, all of this would be rearranged with the seizure of the Southwest from Mexico and the Oregon border treaty. Meanwhile, Texas would trade its extended territory in return for the federal government paying off its debts. Priced at $9,000.

 

Two decades later, it all had changed. Item 4 is Colton's Map of the United States of America Showing the Country from the Atlantic to the Pacific, published in 1867. The western states (or territories) now all exist and have their recognizable boundaries. The only area still not recognizably defined is Dakota, which covers the area of today's North and South Dakota and Wyoming. $9,000.

 

Part 2, Collection #1 contains three views of Salt Lake City and the Mormon migration west. One is a city view from 1867 that looks close to a photographic type taken from a nearby hill. The work of Christian Inger, it looks down Main Street. The Great Salt Lake and Rocky Mountains can be seen in the background. The next one, by Augustus Koch, published in 1870, looks closer to a plat plan, taken from a higher angle, with structures displayed. It is closer to a map than a typical bird's-eye view. Both show the remarkable development of the city in just two decades. The third is a panorama by Millroy & Hayes from 1899, showing the route of the Mormon pioneers with various scenes from along the way. $30,000.

 

Part 2 contains John Bachelder's map and views of the Gettysburg battlefield. Bachelder was an artist and military historian, following Union troops during the Civil War, when he learned about the Battle of Gettysburg. He quickly headed to the site to document the campaign, arriving before the dead had been buried. He recognized that this was the major event of the war, coining the phrase "high water mark of the Confederacy." It was the Confederates' one chance to take the war to the North. It did not last for long. From 1863, there is a proof state of Bachelder's bird's-eye view of the battlefield. It displays the site in great detail, along with color-coded markings to explain the events as they transpired over the three days of fighting. From 1876 is Bachelder's three-part map of the battlefield. Each displays one of the three days of the battle. Also from 1876 is his rendering of Pickett's Charge. Intended by Lee to force Union troops back and advance the Confederate troops more deeply into Union territory, the South instead took heavy casualties and was forced to retreat. That was as deep into Union territory as the Confederates would go, and from there it was a matter of time until their ultimate defeat. $16,000.

 

Part 3 is a large collection of maps from Arabia, 25 of them, representing five centuries. $35,000.

 

Neatline Antique Maps may be reached at 415-717-9764 or michael@neatlinemaps.com. Their website is found at www.neatlinemaps.com.