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Rare Map of Kansas and Nebraska

An excellent early map for rapidly developing Kansas and neighboring Missouri.

This is one of the earliest maps for Kansas after its western portion was organized as part of the Territory of Colorado in 1861. Kansas was admitted to the Union as a state in the same year. The new state's expanding railroad network is shown in detail.

The new counties located along the southern boundary of the state are still completely devoid of townships or settlement. Southwestern Kansas has yet to be divided into counties and is still so little known that only the most prominent topographical landmarks, such as the Arkansas River, are shown.

The map is extremely rare. We locate no other examples.

Provenance: Arkway, June 2017.

G.W. & C.B. Colton Biography

G. W. & C. B. Colton was a prominent family firm of mapmakers who were leaders in the American map trade in the nineteenth century. The business was founded by Joseph Hutchins Colton (1800-1893).  who bought copyrights to existing maps and oversaw their production. By the 1850s, their output had expanded to include original maps, guidebooks, atlases, and railroad maps. Joseph was succeeded by his sons, George Woolworth (1827-1901) and Charles B. Colton (1831-1916). The firm was renamed G. W. & C. B. Colton as a result. George is thought responsible for their best-known work, the General Atlas, originally published under that title in 1857. In 1898, the brothers merged their business and the firm became Colton, Ohman, & Co., which operated until 1901, when August R. Ohman took on the business alone and dropped the Colton name.