A Working Spanish Sea Chart Centered on the Turks & Caicos Islands and the Southern Bahamas
Scarce Spanish Sea Chart of the southern part of the Bahamas, eastern Cuba, most of Jamaica, western Haiti and neighboring islands.
The map extends from I. S. Salvador (landing place of Columbus), Watlings Island and Exuma in the Bahamas to the north part of Santa Domingo and the eastern half of Cuba.
The map provides nice detail for the regions north of Cuba, including Inagua Islands, Crooked Island, Mayguana, Long Island, Cat Island and Great Guana Cay, etc.
The Dirección de Hidrografía, or the Directorate of Hydrographic Works, was established in 1797. Its roots were in the Casa de Contratación, founded in 1503 in Sevilla, which housed all the charts of the Spanish Empire and oversaw the creation and maintenance of the padrón real, the official master chart. The Casa, now in Cadiz, was shuttered in 1790, but Spain still needed a hydrographic body. In response, the Dirección was created in 1797. One of its first projects was the publication of charts from the Malaspina Expedition (1789-1794). The Dirección oversaw not only publication, but also surveying. The Dirección was abolished in the early twentieth century, when their work was distributed to other organizations.