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A Very Early, Detailed Map of Kuwait. Issued During the Anglo-Iraqi War of 1941.

Impressive World War II-era British military map focused on Kuwait.  The map shows all of Kuwait, and parts of Iraq around Basra, as well as the Kuwait-Saudi neutral zone.

The map was made just after the discovery of oil in Kuwait, but before it had become a major producer -- by 1952 Kuwait was the largest exporter of oil in the Gulf.

The map is incredibly detailed, with a host of information relevant to air navigation (including airports, seaplane stations, refueling depots, air corridors, etc.). A key below the map elaborates rivers, Wadi (well-defined, ill-defined, and unsurveyed), wells of different varieties, springs, masonry tanks, mudflats, marshes, sand dunes, stony areas, sandy areas, date palms, cultivation, etc.  There are also motor routes, camel caravan routes, telegraph lines, post offices, and undemarcated and demarcated international boundaries. 

Kuwait City (with the "Sultan's Palace") is shown in some detail. Altogether, Kuwait is much better mapped than surrounding Saudi and Iraqi territory.

The map was originally compiled and drawn in 1935, and this edition was updated during the Anglo-Iraqi War and printed in 1941. As military cartography, it is marked "Not to be Published".

Anglo-Iraqi War

The map was issued in May of 1941, during the British campaign to recapture Iraq from the Axis-aligned government of Rashid Ali.  The British campaign, which lasted from May 2nd to 31st, resulted in the reoccupation of Iraq by the British Empire and the return to power of Prince 'Abd al-Ilah.


Historical maps focusing specifically on Kuwait are extremely rare. This the earliest such map that we have seen.

Condition Description
Light toning along folds. Otherwise very good.