The American Southwest from Arader Galleries
Antoine-Simon Le Page du Pratz traveled to Louisiana in 1718 to take part in the colonization of the area. He stayed until 1734, visiting many parts of the territory, living among the Indians, and working as a plantation manager around New Orleans. For some reason, he waited many years to publish his findings, but in 1758, he released the three-volume Histoire de la Louisiana… It describes the natives among whom he lived, the colony's history, and describes the French settlements. It was meant to also serve as a guide for new French settlers, but the British victory in the French and Indian War removed the territory from French control just five years later. The set includes two maps, the larger of which covers the entire Mississippi valley, including the "Beautiful River," which runs west toward the Pacific. This legendary river was described to him by an Indian. $12,500.
Here is an item that is neither a book nor a map, not even a print, yet it is an extraordinary artifact of western Americana. It is the Seal of the Territory of Louisiana used by William Clark. Clark used this seal as Military Governor of the Louisiana Territory and then as Governor of the Missouri Territory, which was carved out of the old Louisiana. Clark, of course, is best known for his pioneering travels into the Northwest with Meriwether Lewis, the famed Lewis and Clark expedition. Clark served as Governor of the Missouri Territory from 1813-1818. Three years later, Missouri was admitted to the Union. The official seal displays an eagle and thirteen stars, along with a beaver, a mine, cotton bales, furs, and whiskey barrels. There was obviously a lot going on in what was a rapidly growing territory in the early 19th century. $350,000.
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