Highly detailed Imray Sea Chart of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, with 6 large insets.
The insets include San Juan, St. Thomas, the Southeast Part of Culebra, Christianstaed, Mayaguez, Guanica, Mona Island, Sombrero Island, Road Harbor and Gorda Sound. The map is very rare, but seems to have been and earlier edition of the base map referenced in Imray & Sons, Sailing directions for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, compiled from recent surveys . . . published in 1879.
The map includes thousands of soundings and minute navigationaly details, place names, lighthouses (in yellow), sailing directions, etc. One of the most detailed commercial sea charts of the period.
James Imray was a publisher specialized in nautical charts. He started one of the most successful blue-back chart-selling companies of the nineteenth century; it is still in business today. Imray’s father was a dyer and he was born in Spitalfields, London, an area known for its garment industry. James did not want to enter the garment trade, however, and instead apprenticed to Stationer William Lukyn in 1818. Imray began his business as a book publisher and seller; however, he shared premises with Robert Blachford, a chartseller. Imray entered into business with Robert’s successor, Michael. He turned the business into a success and bought Blachford out in 1846, publishing under the imprint of James Imray. In 1854, son James Frederick joined as a partner and the imprint changed to Imray & Son. They thrived thanks to targeted marketing and excellent compilation charts that focused on trade routes. The busines entered in a long decline after the death of James Sr. in 1870. In 1899, Imray & Son amalgamated with Norie & Wilson. This conglomerate was bought by the Laurie firm in 1904 and today the business trades as Imray, Laurie, Norie & Wilson.