Rare French & Indian War Wall Map of North America
Fascinating map of North America, published posthumously by Mary Ann Rocque (wife of the late John Rocque) and Andrew Dury.
Rocque's map of North America is perhaps the single most accurate map of the whole of the continent to date, including much original western information not found on any other printed map. The map includes the recent Spanish, French and English discoveries in the West and Northwest, with numerous historical and geographical notes including speculation as to the source of the Missouri River.
The map is extensively annotated with information on Indian Treaties in North America and other bits of historical information about the British Colonies, including Drake's landfall in 1579 near San Francisco, where he took possession of the region for Queen Elizabeth "on a free surrender of possession by the natives . . . "and a wonderful note on Bermuda, "If a terrestrial paradise is supposed, Bermuda claims it; no part of the world enjoys a pure Air, or more temperate Climate &c. is remarkable for Health, delicate Provisions, &c. they build swift sailing Vessels which they Sell to the Sugar Islands. They are dexterous in the recovery of Wrecks."
A large undefined 'West Sea' is placed in the northwest and a note that it is very uncertain whether the region is land or sea. The map is relatively restrained in its depiction of cartographic myths, although speculative notes are shown for several rivers west of the Great Lakes, including Assinipoels R(iver), "which its (sic) thought goes into the west sea."
The map includes a number of early roads, including roads reaching the Taos, New Mexico area, and early road to Texas and throughout the Southern British Colonies.
Fort Orleans (established in 1723) on the Missouri River is shown, one of the earliest European Forts west of the Mississippi River in what would become the future United States.
The map depicts a radically different, and more informative cartography than the current French (i.e. D'Anville) cartography west of the Mississippi. Pikes Lake (unnamed) and Manton's River in the northwest are precursors of the River of the West, which would extend westwards out of the lake. These first two features appear to have been first seen on Nicolas Bellin's map of North America, 1755, following the manuscript of Verendrye. It is believed this is the first appearance of this information on an English map. Its cartography differs in the west from the Mitchell map of 1755, particularly in the Upper Mississippi River depiction. The source of the Rio Grande is marked as unknown.
Wheat notes that the map is an interesting map for the Mississippi Valley and the country to the west, especially good for what is now Arizona, showing all the villages named for the Apostles on Rio des Apostres (the Gila River). Fort St. John is shown in Texas on the Rio Grande, as is the road through Texas to Mexico. Another fascinating note describes Santa Fe and New Mexico.
The boundaries of New England and Virginia by various early 17th Century charters extending to the West Coast are noted, with the boundaries plotted from the Atlantic to the Pacifica.
Many other fascinating annotations are included in the map.
The map is rare on the market. We note no examples at auction since the Streeter Sale (1969, Lot 3911).