Antique Map of the Spanish Main, Caribbean, Central America and American Southeast and Florida
Decorative full color example of Johann Baptiste Homann's decorative map, based upon Guillaume De L'Isle's landmark map of Mexico and Florida, first issued in 1703.
De L'Isle's map introduced the information from La Salle, Bienville, d'Iberville and other French explorers in America. It was the first map to accurately portray the mouth of the Mississippi and the Great Lakes region. Also accurately shown for the first time are the English settlements on the east coast. The reports of Iberville are present in the villages in the Lower Mississippi Valley and Texas, where the Spanish were active building missions and presidios.
Several Dutch and German cartographers, including J.B. Homann, copied De L'Isle's work, but added significant decorative features and revisions. The tracks of the Spanish Galleons and routes to Havana are shown.
Johann Baptist Homann (1663-1724) was a mapmaker who founded the famous Homann Heirs publishing company. He lived his entire life in Bavaria, particularly in Nuremberg. Initially, Johann trained to become a priest before converting to Protestantism and working as a notary.
In 1702, Johann founded a publishing house that specialized in engravings. The firm flourished, becoming the leading map publisher in Germany and an important entity in the European map market. In 1715, Johann was named Imperial Geographer to the Holy Roman Empire by Charles VI and made a member of the Prussian Academy of Sciences. Most importantly for his business, his reputation and contacts gained him imperial printing privileges which protected his publications and recommended him to customers. Johann is best known for this Grosser Atlas ueber die ganze Welt, or the Grand Atlas of the World, published in 1716.
After Johann died in 1724, the business passed to his son, Christoph (1703-1730). Upon Christoph’s early death, the company passed to subsequent heirs, with the name of the company changing to Homann Erben, or Homann Heirs. The firm continued in business until 1848.