Schoolchild Map of North America, Just Before the Mexican-American War
Fantastic schoolchild representation of North America, delicately drawn in full manuscript and showing the geographic abnormalities of the day. The map is masterfully represented, with cities and territories named, and colors used to represent possessions.
The United States is shown controlling Texas and much of the Transmississippi West, although the Oregon border dispute is as yet unresolved. What is now southern British Columbia is, with the exception of Vancouver Island, shown as an American Possession, reflecting the extreme "fifty-four forty" claim of the United States, pushed for by Democratic expansionists. However, due to heightening tensions in the late 1840s with Mexico, this claim would be dropped as a simultaneous war with Great Britain could be disastrous.
Numerous cities are shown, including Santa Cruz in California, and Baja California is overly stretched. Alaska is shown as Russian Territory. British Possessions in Canada and the Caribbean are colored in red, while Spanish influences are shown in yellow, reflecting the tendencies of the time. Rivers shown include the Mississippi and its tributaries, the Rio Grande, and an overly eastwards flowing Colorado.