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A Colonial Manuscript Map of Southern Maine From The Family of Captain James N. Sever

Late 18th century manuscript map of a portion Southern Maine, illustrating towns and land grants, most of which occurred between 1768 and 1773.

The map provides a fine depiction of what would become the Southern Part of the State of Maine. including a number of early township names, as confirmed by the Massachusetts General Court between 1768 and 1773.

The map shows the course of the Kennebec River and Androscoggin River to their terminus, with the Saco River shown to the west.  The map extends from Casco Bay and Cape Elizabeth on the Atlantic Coast of Maine, to Biddeford and Sanford, Maine in the south and the Ellis River and the area around Waterville, Maine in the north. 

The map predates the founding of the town of Portland (1786).  Back Cove is shown as a small settlement, just to the south of Falmouth.

The map identifies a number of interesting place names, including:

  • "Phillips Town now Sanford," recognition of the recent name change of Sanford in 1768.
  • "Narrangansett now Buckstown," showing the town of Buxton, which had been founded as Narrangansett Number 1 in 1728 and incorporated as Buxton in 1772.
  • "New Marblehead now Windham," showing the former Marblehead Plantation, which was incorporated on June 12, 1762 as Windham.
  • "Raymondtown granted to Raymond & others," showing the Raymondtown Plantation granted in 1767 to the descendants of Captain William Raymond of Beverly, Massachusetts, and his militia.
  • "Bridgeton Granted to Milliken Esq. & Others," shows the Bridgton, which was granted in 1768  to Moody Bridges and a group of proprietors.  The reference to Milliken is Benjamin Milliken, who received an earlier grant for the same area in 1765, at time when it was called Pondicherry.
  • "Granted to Col James Otis & Others in 1771", references the  grant of the area which is now Otisfield to James Otis, Nathaniel Gorham and other descendants of Captain John Gorham and certain members of his company who had fought in the 1690 Battle of Quebec.
  • "Granted to Joshua Fuller & others in 1773 called No. 4",  referencing the grant of Plantation Number 4 to Joshua Fuller and his associates in 1771, which would become the town of Paris.
  • "Sudbury Canada Granted to Josiah Richardson & others" references the grant of what is now the town of Bethel, originally called Sudbury Canada in 1769 to Josiah Richardson of Sudbury, Massachusetts and others (or their heirs) for services at the Battle of Quebec in 1690.
  • "Phips Canada Granted to David Phips Esqr & Others in 1771"  references the grant of what is now Jay (named for the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, John Jay), a grant given to the heirs of Sir William Phips in 1771.
  • "Port Royal Granted to Samuel Livermore & Others in 1771," shows what would become the town of Livermore, granted to Major Samuel Livermore, Dr. Leonard Williams and George Babcock in 1771.
  • "Sylvester Canada Granted to James Warren Esq. & Others," showing the area of Turner, Maine, granted June 20, 1768 to Major James Warren and others, survivors of Captain Joseph Sylvester's company for their services in the 1690 Battle of Quebec.
  • Bakerstown Granted to Samuel Gerrish & Others"  showing the area of Poland, Maine, granted n 1765 to officers and soldiers who served with Sir William Phips in the 1690 Battle of Quebec, led by Major Samuel Gerrish.
  • "Pejepscot Claims," references the lands claimed by the  Pejepscot Purchase Company, also known as the Proprietors of the Township of Brunswick. In 1714, a consortium from Boston and Portsmouth bought the land, thereafter called the Pejepscot Purchase. The Massachusetts General Court constituted the township in 1717, naming it "Brunswick".  The Pejebscot Claims would remain disputed until the 1814. 

Provenance: Captain James N. Sever (1761-1845), Captain USS Congress; by descent in family. Brunk Auctions, October 2020.

Condition Description
Large losses in upper left with rice paper backing, large professionally repaired tear in the center of top sheet, creasing along center line where two sheets were joined, light toning and foxing.