Interesting map of the NW Coast of America and the NE Coast of Asia, based upon Jefferys map of 1768. Prior to Cook's 1st Voyage, the English, French and Russians were actively debating the cartography of the region in the North Pacific between Asia and North America. The Russian explorations of the first half of the 18th Century, including those by Behring, Tchirikow and others, had been reported by JN De L'Isle, who had worked with the Russians and was privy to their latest discoveries. The mythical voyages of De Fuca, d'Aguilar and De Font were still very much in evidence in contemporary cartography, as were concepts of a NW Passage, the Sea of the West, River of the West and other vestiges of 16th and 17th Century conjectural/mythical cartography. Following the publication by Buache of his maps on the region, the debate between the French and English was quite fertile, so much so that Diderot dedicated most of his 10 map supplment to the region. This map shows the Jefferys model, including a wide De Fuca based River from Puget Sound to the Atlantic over Hudson's Bay, several significant rivers flowing from the Pacific to the middle of North America, and Jesuit based water passages from the Pacific to the Arctic Seas. A massive approximation of Alaskan Archipelago is shown, along with the Russian discoveries.
Gilles Robert de Vaugondy (1688-1766) and Didier Robert de Vaugondy (1723-1786) were influential figures in the realm of 18th-century French cartography. Originating from Paris, their contributions to mapmaking were significant during an era of expansive geographical exploration.
Gilles Robert de Vaugondy entered the world of cartography not through family tradition but through personal interest and the budding opportunities of his time. Born in 1688, he worked during a time when Paris was becoming a central hub for cartographic activities. Gilles often incorporated the latest findings from explorers into his maps, making them sought-after for their contemporary relevance. His connections weren't limited to his immediate circle; he frequently interacted with other key mapmakers, staying updated on the latest techniques and findings.
His son, Didier, was born in 1723 and had the advantage of growing up surrounded by maps and globes. While his father was renowned for maps, Didier made a name for himself in the field of globemaking. His globes were some of the most precise and detailed in France, gaining recognition even among the royalty. In addition to his work in cartography and globemaking, Didier had a keen interest in education, especially after the expulsion of the Jesuits from France. He stepped in to produce geographical educational materials, fulfilling a newfound need.
The maps and globes produced by the Vaugondys remain an enduring testament to the peak of French cartography during the Enlightenment. Their works, characterized by precision and the inclusion of contemporary findings, helped to shape our understanding of the world during a transformative period in European history.