One of the First Maps to Name the United States
Rare variant edition of the lower sheet of Rigobert Bonne's 2 sheet map of the British Colonies in North America, which has now been adapted to name the United States for the first time.
Prior editions of the map did not include the name United States or the internal boundary lines of the fledgling States. The map also references East and West Florida.
Detailed map of the US & French Louisiana, west to the region of the Padouca Indians along the Upper Missouri and covering most of Texas. Nice detail in the Missouri and Mississippi River Valleys, indicative of the French activity in the regions. A number of early western French Forts and Fur Trading Posts are shown. Nice detail throughout the Midwest and Great Lakes regions, especially Indian place names. Florida is an Archipelago.
Rigobert Bonne (1727-1794) was an influential French cartographer of the late-eighteenth century. Born in the Lorraine region of France, Bonne came to Paris to study and practice cartography. He was a skilled cartographer and hydrographer and succeeded Jacques Nicolas Bellin as Royal Hydrographer at the Depot de la Marine in 1773. He published many charts for the Depot, including some of those for the Atlas Maritime of 1762. In addition to his work at the Depot, he is best known for his work on the maps of the Atlas Encyclopedique (1788) which he did with Nicholas Desmarest. He also made the maps for the Abbe Raynals’ famous Atlas de Toutes Les Parties Connues du Globe Terrestre (1780).
More than his individual works, Bonne is also important for the history of cartography because of the larger trends exemplified by his work. In Bonne’s maps, it is possible to see the decisive shift from the elaborate decorations of the seventeenth century and the less ornate, yet still prominent embellishments of the early to mid-eighteenth century. By contrast, Bonne’s work was simple, unadorned, and practical. This aesthetic shift, and the detail and precision of his geography, make Bonne an important figure in mapping history.