Important early map of the region between the Canadian River and the Arkansas River, extending west to include Albuquerque and Santa Fe in New Mexico and a significant part of what would become Colorado Territory.
The map includes topographic features and good detail with the locations of forts. Identifies the Santa Fe Trail as Santa Fe Road. Shows the route of Lt. Whipple in 1853, Aubrey's Trail and locates Old Fort Scott, Ft. Union, Raton Pass, Santa Fe, etc. At bottom is a profile of elevations by Dr. Wizlizenus.
In March 1856, less than two years after Kansas was organized as a territory under provisions of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, a bill was introduced to Congress to provide for a survey of the southern boundary of the territory and conduct a feasibility study for a rail line along the 37th parallel. Joseph E. Johnston of the Topographical Engineers led a reconnaissance from Neosho, Missouri, along the western portion of the Santa Fe Trail to Santa Fe.
Johnston presented the results of his findings in a report to Congress in 1858, which included a map of the route by his assistant, John F. Weyss. Kansas Territory at the time incorporated present-day Colorado, and thus the map shows the territory as far west as Raton Pass and Albuquerque.
The map includes topographical features and provides good details of towns, forts, and the routes of earlier expeditions, including "Aubrey's Trail." Aubry was a Santa Fe trader whose trail explorations in 1851 and 1852 resulted in finding an improved route from Cold Spring, on the Cimarron, to the Arkansas. Johnston's survey was an important one, appearing at a time when boundary decisions helped to precipitate clashes in Kansas between pro-slavery and anti-slavery factions just prior to the Civil War.