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Description

Finely executed manuscript town plan for a Virginia town, drawn by T. R. Dunn, C.E.

T.R. Dunn is Thomas R. Dunn, who is listed as a civil engineer in the 1880 and 1900 Petersburg censuses. He was born in Virginia in March 1841. Dunn graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1861. His 1904 tombstone (Blandford cem., Petersburg) calls him Thomas Robert Dunn, Captain C.S.A., 1st Virginia Battalion of Infantry, and adds at the bottom: from Manassas to Appomattox. A mention in the Nov. 10, 1900, issue of the Engineering Record indicates that he was city engineer for Petersburg at that time.

The street names (states) have some resemblance to a section of Portsmouth, VA, but the very large and completely regular grid, in perfect alinement with the points of the compass, does not correspond exactly to Portsmouth.

It is more likely that the map is for a paper town, which never came into existence. There was a lot of laying out of speculative lots in Virginia in the early 1890s; Roanoke is the best known example. The paper developments came crashing down in the panic of 1893. Dunn's plan is more likely a plan for a project that was never built.

Condition Description
Manuscript survey on original linen, signed by surveyor.