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Alvin Jewett Johnson (1827 - 1884) was an American map publisher. Born in Wallingford, Vermont, he received only a basic public education, but he still served as a school teacher for several years before moving to Richmond, Virginia and, in 1857, New York City. Johnson also worked as a book canvasser for the map publisher J.H. Colton.

Johnson's name first appears on maps published with Samuel N. Gaston and D. Griffing Johnson (no clear relation) in the mid-1850s, and his name (along with Ross Browning) appeared on Colton's atlas maps of 1859 and 1860. Although map historian Water Ristow speculates that Colton sold his copyrights to Johnson and his business partner, fellow Vermonter Browning, a more likely theory is that Johnson and Browning financially bailed out the Colton firm in exchange for the right to use Colton’s existing copyrighted map plates. The first Johnson maps were mostly reissues of earlier Colton maps. Indeed, Johnson's earliest works described his firm as the “Successors to J. H. Colton and Company”. Johnson converted the original Colton steel plate engravings to lithographic stones, allowing his firm to produce more maps at a lower price point. 

In 1860, the Johnson firm published its first significant work, the Johnson’s New Illustrated (Steel Plate) Family Atlas. The first edition of the Atlas bears imprints in both New York and Richmond, VA. In 1861, however, following the outbreak of the American Civil War, the Johnson & Browning firm abandoned their Richmond location. Browning seems to have remained in Virginia to pursue other ventures and, in 1861, Browning’s portion of the firm was purchased by Benjamin P. Ward. The 1863 issue of the Atlas was one of the most unusual, it being a compilation of older Johnson and Browning maps, updated 1862 Johnson and Ward maps, and newer 1863 maps with a revised border design.

The 1864 issue of the Atlas is the first true Johnson and Ward atlas. Johnson published one more edition in partnership with Ward in 1865, after which Johnson becomes the sole publisher. The next issue of the Atlas, 1866, is the first purely Johnson atlas with all new map plates, updated imprints, and copyrights. Johnson maps include a unique border style, which changed over the years, but was not copied by other makers. These include a “strapwork border” from 1860 to 1863, a “fretwork border” from 1863 to 1869 and a “spirograph border” in 1870. 

In addition to the Family Atlas, Johnson issued numerous wall maps, pocket maps, and, in the 1880s, the Cyclopedia. Johnson frequently updated his western atlas maps and on occasion, more than one update appeared in a single year. Johnson continued to publish the Family Atlas until 1887. In 1879, Johnson brought his son into the business, and their publications have the imprint “A.J. Johnson and Son” and, later, “A.J. Johnson and Co.” Johnson’s son continued the business until it shuttered in 1887.

Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
12 x 16.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
53920
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
56448
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16.5 x 13 inches
Condition:
Stock#:
76243
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
76733
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
15.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
76916
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
17 x 24 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77763
Place/Date:
New York / 1866
Size:
15 x 11 inches Including Text
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
77950
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
16.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
78327
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
16 x 22 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
55877
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
71512
Place/Date:
New York City / 1862
Size:
17 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
71690
Place/Date:
New-York / 1861
Size:
17 x 24 inches inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
72513
Place/Date:
New York / 1869
Size:
17 x 23 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
75756
Place/Date:
New York / 1869
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80279
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80330
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
81394
Place/Date:
New-York / 1865
Size:
21.5 x 15.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
83210
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
85275
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
12.5 x 15.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
78238
Place/Date:
New-York / 1862
Size:
26.5 x 15 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
72003
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
74350
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 16 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78183
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
23.5 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78715
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
17 x 24.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
80247
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80462
Place/Date:
New York / 1869
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
81089
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
84212
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 16.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
84342
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
84881
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
17 x 24 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
72779
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
20.5 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
74975
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
17 x 23 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
77869
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
15 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
78678
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24.5 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
83570
Place/Date:
New York City / 1861
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
84322
Place/Date:
New York / 1869
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
79311
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
15 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80153
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
15.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
72538
Place/Date:
New York / 1861
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
76812
Place/Date:
New York / 1868
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
82572
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
15.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
80711
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
26 x 16 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
80712
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24.5 x 16.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
78712

Archived

Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
15.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
Stock#:
8962
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
4337
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
5304
Place/Date:
New York / 1884
Size:
12 x 8.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
6017
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
14 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
m0543
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
14 x 11 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
m0544
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
0765
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10088
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
Good
Stock#:
10750
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
1172
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
17.5 x 24 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
5296
Place/Date:
New York / 1884
Size:
12 x 9 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
6006
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
23.5 x 17.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
6947
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
9658
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10207
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10799
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
11592
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
11397
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
15.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
13912
Place/Date:
New York / 1863
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
15056
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
24352
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
15858
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
13 x 16 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
15852
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
17 x 24 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
15854
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
0063em
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
17 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
24559
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
34651
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
Good
Stock#:
10751
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
10791
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
10797
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
17 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
1245
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
15052
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
23 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
4319
Place/Date:
New York / 1884
Size:
12 x 9 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
6005
Place/Date:
New York / 1884
Size:
12 x 9 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
6014
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
9933
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
15.5 x 12.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
15834
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
17 x 12 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
25064
Place/Date:
New York / 1869
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
27945
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
39632
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10798
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
13382
Place/Date:
New York / 1881
Size:
12 x 9 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
1470a
Place/Date:
New York / 1867
Size:
24 x 17 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
2132
Place/Date:
New York / 1864
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG-
Stock#:
15856
Place/Date:
New York / 1865
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
15838
Place/Date:
New York / 1860
Size:
13.5 x 11 inches (x2)
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
16908
Place/Date:
New York / 1862
Size:
16 x 13 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
34178