A Remarkable Set of Conjectural Northwest Passage Options
Decorative map of the world on Mercator's Projection, including some truly fascinating cartography.
An early example of the Sea of the West is shown, referred to as "West Sea discover'd and Sail'd Through By I Fuca 1592", with further notes at the mouth of the Sea, crediting Juan De Fuca and Martin Aguilar's discoveries.
What makes the map even more remarkable is the inclusion of the Russian Discoveries in the first part of the 18th Century. A number of odd land masses along the northwest coast of America are attributed to Russian Discoveries of 1741, Captain Spanberg in 1728 and Captain Barnarda.
De Fonte's Lake and a Northwest Passage are also prominently shown. Bering's discoveries in 1728 and Lands discovered in 1722 are also noted on the NE Coast of Asia. North of Japan, Company's Land and De Gama Land are noted. A prominent Northeast Passage is also shown.
New Holland is shown in the classic mid-18th Century configuration and only New Zealand's west coast is shown.
A terrific world map from the great age of discoveries immediately prior to Captain Cook.
Thomas Kitchin was a British cartographer and engraver. Born in Southwark, England, Kitchin was the eldest of several children. He was apprenticed to the map engraver Emanuel Bowen from 1732 to 1739, and he married Bowen’s daughter, Sarah, in December 1739. By 1741 Kitchin was working independently and in 1746 he began taking on apprentices at his firm. His son Thomas Bowen Kitchin was apprenticed to him starting in 1754. By 1755 Kitchin was established in Holborn Hill, where his firm produced all kinds of engraved materials, including portraits and caricatures. He married his second wife, Jane, in 1762. Beginning in 1773 Kitchin was referred to as Hydrographer to the King, a position his son also later held. He retired to St. Albans and continued making maps until the end of his life.
A prolific engraver known for his technical facility, clean lettering, and impressive etched decorations, Kitchin produced several important works throughout his career. He produced John Elphinstone’s map of Scotland in 1746, and the first pocket atlas of Scotland, Geographia Scotiae, in 1748/1749. He co-published The Small English Atlas in 1749 with another of Bowen’s apprentices, Thomas Jefferys. He produced The Large English Atlas serially with Emanuel Bowen from 1749 to 1760. The latter was the most important county atlas since the Elizabethan era, and the first real attempt to cover the whole country at a large scale. In 1755 Kitchin engraved the important John Mitchell map of North America, which was used at the peace treaties of Paris and Versailles. In 1770 he produced the twelve-sheet road map England and Wales and in 1769–70 he produced Bernhard Ratzer’s plans of New York. In 1783, he published The Traveller’s Guide through England and Wales.