Fine example of one of the earliest maps published by George Cram.
Cram's map is hand colored by counties and subdivided into sections. The map provides a meticulous accounting of the towns, roads, railroads, lakes and rivers. Train Stations and Post Offices are also noted.
George Franklin Cram published his first map in about 1866, but only began actively publishing maps in 1869. The present map is the second state of his Sectional Map of the State of Ohio, which was first issued in 1869 and is recorded in a single example at Yale. There are no recorded examples of this 1870 edition. Cram re-issued a large format map of Iowa in 1872, using a completely new lithographic stone, with a different title.
Early Cram maps are all very rare on the market, with this example apparently being the only surviving example of the 1870 edition of the map.
George F. Cram (1842-1928), or George Franklin Cram, was an American mapmaker and businessman. During the Civil War, Cram served under General William Tecumseh Sherman and participated in his March to the Sea. His letters of that time are now important sources for historians of the Civil War. In 1867, Cram and his uncle, Rufus Blanchard, began the company known by their names in Evanston, Illinois.
Two years later, Cram became sole proprietor and the company was henceforth known as George F. Cram Co. Specializing in atlases, Cram was one of the first American companies to publish a world atlas. One of their most famous products was the Unrivaled Atlas of the World, in print from the 1880s to the 1950s.
Cram died in 1928, seven years after he had merged the business with that of a customer, E.A. Peterson. The new company still bore Cram’s name. Four years later, the Cram Company began to make globes, a branch of the business that would continue until 2012, when the company ceased to operate. For the final several decades of the company’s existence it was controlled by the Douthit family, who sold it just before the company was shuttered.