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One of The Earliest Printed Maps of the Old Northwest Territory

Fine old color example of Fielding Lucas' map of the so called "Upper Territories" of the Midwest, pubished by Fielding Lucas circa 1816, and engraved by Tanner. One of the few maps of the Old Northwest Territory and perhaps the rarest of maps to appear in a commercially printed atlas.

The map comprises Michigan Territory (created 1805), Illinois Territory (created 1809), Indiana Territory (created 1800), and North Western Territory (Northwest Territory) (created in 1787 and consisting of what would later become Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin and northeastern Minnesota). The Northwest Territory existed as a Territory from July 13, 1787, until March 1, 1803, when Ohio was admitted as a state.

The map shows the topography and hydrography of the region in nice detail, along with Indian villages, portages, and the few early settlements in the region, primarily along the Great Lakes, Misssippi River, and Ohio River


The map appeared in Fielding Lucas's A New and Elegant General Atlas. . . , published in Baltimore in about 1816. The Lucas Atlas is quite scarce, with no copies appearing at auction since 1989.

The map is very rare on the market and is not referenced in Karpinski's cartobibliography of Michigan Maps. This is the second time we have seen the map on the market.

Fielding Lucas Jr. Biography

Fielding Lucas, Jr. (1781-1854) was a prominent American cartographer, engraver, artist, and public figure during the first half of the 19th century.

Lucas was born in Fredericksburg, Virginia and moved to Philadelphia as a teenager, before settling in Baltimore. There he launched a successful cartographic career. Lucas's first atlas was announced in early- to mid-1812, with production taking place between September 1812 and December of 1813, by which point the engravings were complete. Bound copies of the atlas -- A new and elegant general atlas: Containing maps of each of the United States -- were available early in the next year, beating Carey to market by about two months. Lucas later published A General Atlas Containing Distinct Maps Of all the known Countries in the World in the early 1820s.