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Rare Early Map of Marion County, Florida 

Fine cadastral map of Marion County, lithographed in Philadelphia by F. Bourquin, which has been annotated by an early owner.

The present map was created during the boom period of the land acquisitions and development plans of Hamilton Disston, who purchased 4 million acres of Florida land in 1881 and made an ambitious attempt to develop and provide infrastructure in central Florida.

This is the second state of the map, lacking the advertising, but adding a red line, quite possibly a canal route or road, which is present on both this copy and the Library of Congress's copy (the only other surviving example).

In addition to the red line, the original owner has added what appears to be a line tracking a road from south of Lake Weir, crossing over the lake and generally trending to the northwest, ending in Ocala. On either side of the road, there are names added in an early hand, including:

  • Montagne
  • Santos
  • Welshton
  • Belleview
  • Candler
  • Ocklawaha
  • East Lake
  • Stanton

These names correspond to the early towns that were then being developed in Marion County.

Includes the stamp of J.T. Lancaster of Ocala, Florida.

States of the Map and Rarity

We note four states of the map. 

  • 1883:  with advertising
  • 1885:  no advertising  
  • 1887:  date changed. Other minor changes
  • 1888:  date changed.  Other minor changes.

OCLC locates 1 copy of the 1883 and 1885 maps in the Library of Congress.

The State Library of Florida notes that it holds a photostatic copy of the 1883 example.