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Description

First edition of the first government exploration of the southwest.

The maps were the first to describe the terrain of the Southwest based on firsthand accounts and are considered "milestones in the mapping of the American West" (Wheat). Setting out from St. Louis in 1806, Pike and his party proceeded overland to Arkansas, Kansas, and Colorado (failing to reach the summit of the Peak that now carries his name), before falling into the hands of the Spanish authorities and being escorted to Santa Fe, and then to Louisiana. He provides the first account in English of Texas as a whole and his very detailed information on the local Spanish government proved influential for federal territorial ambition. Three of the maps show Texas. Pike's information about the weakness of Spanish authority in Santa Fe, and the profitability of trading with Mexico, stirred businessmen and politicians into expanding to Texas.

Dewitt Clinton's copy  Clinton was a U.S. Senator, thrice mayor of New York City, and served as governor of New York for eight years across two terms.

Provenance

Dewitt Clinton (bookplate);
Michael Sharpe (bookplate);
Ira Lipman (his sale, Sotheby's New York 13 April 2021)

 

Condition Description
8vo (210 x 130 mm). Six maps (five folding) and three folding charts; usual offsetting to title, minor scattered spotting, Contemporary marbled sheep, red morocco label. Calf clamshell case, gilt leather label.
Reference
Best of the West 32; Field 1217; Graff 3290; Howes P373; Jenkins, Basic Texas Books 163; Sabin 62836; Streeter, Texas 1047; Wagner-Camp-Becker 9:1; Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West 297-29