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Description

Rare pocket map of the United States, published by J.M. Atwood.

Rumsey notes that the map "shows the Gold Regions in California. Atwood made important maps of the Gold Rush for Colton and Ensign & Thayer in 1849. In this map, he publishes his own Gold Rush map, showing the routes to California and Oregon. This map is rare: it is not in Phillips, Karrow, Wheat, Streeter, Graff.... Wheat Gold 258 is an 1854 derivative of this map put out by Ensign, Bridgman & Fanning. This 1851 map is very well done, and possibly the only map that Atwood published under his own name."

This beautifully executed map shows the overland and sea routes from the East Coast and Midwest to the West Coast. On the East Coast, the chief ports of departure are New York, Charleston, and Savannah; in the Gulf of Mexico, the only port shown is New Orleans. Of course, all routes, including those from Europe, lead to Panama for the sea voyage to the West Coast. On land, routes are shown from Council Bluff, Independence, and Fort Smith, Arkansas. The new borders Atwood depicts show Mexico intruding north all the way to the Gila River, reflecting a pre-Gadsden border.

Although Atwood (born ca. 1818) was a prolific engraver and mapmaker who worked for many of the major map publishers (especially Colton), it appears that he rarely issued material under his own imprint. According to Tooley, he was active between 1840-1883. In addition to the many maps he created for Colton, his maps may be found in Ensign & Thayer's guides and productions (including Phelps's National Map of the United States), atlases (including that to accompany Chambers' Encyclopaedia), etc. His work was of such a quality that Jacob De Cordova engaged him to execute his epochal map of Texas.

Condition Description
Pocket map, folded into original green boards with gilt title on front board. Area of staining from the original glue, else near fine.
Reference
Rumsey 2365.