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Petermann's Issue of An Important Map of Sinaloa, Mexico

German edition of Friedrich Wiedner's rare map of Sinaloa in northwestern Mexico, originally lithographed by W.T. Galloway and published in San Francisco in 1882.

While created for the mining industry, the map's most unique features is the large inset "Ethongraphic-Linguistic Map of Sinaloa," documenting 9 "Living Languages of Sinaloa."

A second map at the bottom shows the "First Sketch of a Geological Map of Sinaloa. A third inset is a "Profile of Sinaloa, following the road from Mazatlan to Durango,"

Wiedner's original map was issued with a 19-page pamphlet, Map of Sinaloa with Statistical and Geological Notes, and sold apparently separately as well.

Friedrich Weidner

Friedrich Weidner was a civil and mining engineer who was working in Mexico as early as the mid-1860s. In testimony of David J. Garth, given to the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on October 2, 1888, Garth reported that Weidner was a German metallurgist and mining engineer.


OCLC lists two copies of the original map, locating one of them (at the Huntington); three copies of the pamphlet with the map (two at UC Berkeley and one at the University Forschungs Bibliothek Erfurt Gotha), and two copies of the book with no mention of the map (at the Huntington and the New York Historical Society).

Augustus Herman Petermann Biography

August Heinrich Petermann (1822-1878) is a renowned German cartographer of the nineteenth century. Petermann studied cartography at the Geographical Art-School in Potsdam before traveling to Edinburgh to work with Dr. A. Keith Johnston on an English edition of Berghaus’ Physical Atlas. Two years later he moved to London, where he made maps and advised exploratory expeditions as they set off to explore the interior of Africa and the Arctic.

In 1854, Petermann returned to Germany to be Director of the Geographical Institute of Justus Perthes in Gotha. There, he was the editor of the Geographische Mittheilungen and Stieler’s Handatlas. The Royal Geographical Society of London awarded him their Gold Medal in 1860. He continued his interest in exploration in Germany, fundraising for the German Exploring Expeditions of 1868 and 1869-70, which sought an open Arctic sea. Tragically, he committed suicide in 1878.