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Stock# 38468
Description

Rare early map showing the proposed route of the Central Pacific Railroad, during a relatively early period of its construction.

The present map is one of the earliest maps focusing on the route of the Central Pacific, which we have seen and was clearly intended to illustrate some sort of report either on the progress of the route or access to the mining regions in Nevada from the west coast.

One fascinating place name which appears on the map is "Ostar City," between Humboldt and Humboldt Wells, Nevada. While it almost certainly shows because it was an intended station on the route, we can find no record of an Ostar, or Ostar City, in Nevada.

The map shows the route extending from the west to Virginia Station, just to the east of Cisco, California. The route reached Cisco on December 3, 1866 and Virginia Station on May 10, 1867. The map shows the Utah-Nevada border as it existed between 1862 and 1866. As such, it would appear that this map was likely printed sometime in 1866.

Humboldt (Humboldt House or Humboldt Station) was the point intended as a drop point for miners headed to and from Humboldt City, Prince Royal and the central Nevada mines in the vicinity. In September, 1866, it became a stage stop for historic William (Hill) Beachey Railroad Stage Lines. As the Central Pacific Railroad advanced from eastern California, it reached Humboldt House about September 15, 1868.

The name "Humboldt Wells" refers to a point which had been important to overland travellers even before the railroad, as it was an important watering point on the California Emigrant Trail. It became the first on the Central Pacific route and was completed in September 1869 and would become the town of Wells, Nevada in 1873.

The map also locates Great Salt Lake City and Ft. Bridger, although neither is on the railroad route. Further to the west, the railroad splits into the Union Pacific (bound for Council Bluffs) and the Union Pacific Kansas Branch, which passes through Denver City, on its way to St. Louis.