Important early map of the Carolinas, engraved by Francis Lamb for the 1676 edition of Speeds A Prospect . . . of the World.
The map is Speed's edition of the famous Lords Proprietors' Map of Carolina, based upon Charles II's grant to 8 of his supporters of all the lands between Virginia and Florida (overlooking the fact he did not own the land).
Speed's map is drawn from the account of John Lederer, a young German explorer who had crossed the Blue Ridge Mountains in hopes of seeing the Pacific Ocean. Lederer introduced numerous geographical myths, including a description of Piedmont NC as being under water for part of the year, a massive interior lake, and an arid region he named the Arenosa Desert. Speed's map and the text on the verso were the first to give extensive credit to Lederer and contributed to the survival of these myths for nearly 100 years.
John Speed (1551 or '52 - 28 July 1629) was the best known English mapmaker of the Stuart period. Speed came to mapmaking late in life, producing his first maps in the 1590s and entering the trade in earnest when he was almost 60 years old.
John Speed's fame, which continues to this day, lies with two atlases, The Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine (first published 1612), and the Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World (1627). While The Theatre ... started as solely a county atlas, it grew into an impressive world atlas with the inclusion of the Prospect in 1627. The plates for the atlas passed through many hands in the 17th century, and the book finally reached its apotheosis in 1676 when it was published by Thomas Bassett and Richard Chiswell, with a number of important maps added for the first time.