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William Faden (1749-1836) was the most prominent London mapmaker and publisher of the late-eighteenth and early-nineteenth centuries. His father, William Mackfaden, was a printer who dropped the first part of his last name due to the Jacobite rising of 1745. 

Apprenticed to an engraver in the Clothworkers' Company, he was made free of the Company in August of 1771. He entered into a partnership with the family of Thomas Jeffreys, a prolific and well-respected mapmaker who had recently died in 1771. This partnership lasted until 1776. 

Also in 1776, Faden joined the Society of Civil Engineers, which later changed its name to the Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers. The Smeatonians operated as an elite, yet practical, dining club and his membership led Faden to several engineering publications, including canal plans and plans of other new engineering projects.

Faden's star rose during the American Revolution, when he produced popular maps and atlases focused on the American colonies and the battles that raged within them. In 1783, just as the war ended, Faden inherited his father's estate, allowing him to fully control his business and expand it; in the same year he gained the title "Geographer in Ordinary to his Majesty."

Faden also commanded a large stock of British county maps, which made him attractive as a partner to the Ordnance Survey; he published the first Ordnance map in 1801, a map of Kent. The Admiralty also admired his work and acquired some of his plates which were re-issued as official naval charts.

Faden was renowned for his ingenuity as well as his business acumen. In 1796 he was awarded a gold medal by the Society of Arts. With his brother-in-law, the astronomer and painter John Russell, he created the first extant lunar globe.

After retiring in 1823 the lucrative business passed to James Wyld, a former apprentice. He died in Shepperton in 1826, leaving a large estate. 

 

Place/Date:
London / 1795
Size:
28.5 x 22 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
50109
Place/Date:
London / 1776
Size:
28 x 23.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
50404

Archived

Place/Date:
London / 1780
Size:
28 x 20 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
23583
Place/Date:
London / 1793
Size:
12.5 x 8.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
36730
Place/Date:
London / 1780
Size:
28 x 20 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
51825
Place/Date:
London / 1801
Size:
29 x 20 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
51721
Place/Date:
London / 1794
Size:
14 x 10.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
12012
Place/Date:
London / 1803
Size:
31.5 x 24 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
23440
Place/Date:
London / 1798
Size:
5 x 4 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
25588
Place/Date:
London / 1798
Size:
7 x 5.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
25627
Place/Date:
London / 1790
Size:
24 x 15.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
42368
Place/Date:
London / 1789
Size:
38 x 30 inches
Condition:
VG-
Stock#:
53068op
Place/Date:
London / 1784
Size:
20 x 18 inches
Condition:
Good
Stock#:
23163
Place/Date:
London / 1801
Size:
29 x 20 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
23739
Place/Date:
London / 1824
Size:
23 x 23 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
26525
Place/Date:
London / 1790
Size:
24 x 15.5 inches
Condition:
VG+
Stock#:
51352
Place/Date:
London / 1812
Size:
30.5 x 21 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
55681
Place/Date:
London / 1795
Size:
28.5 x 22 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
23164
Place/Date:
London / 1790
Size:
31.5 x 32 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
23404
Place/Date:
London / 1790
Size:
23 x 23 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
23323
Place/Date:
London / 1790
Size:
23 x 23 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
40945
Place/Date:
London / 1795
Size:
28.5 x 22 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
41092
Place/Date:
London / 1812
Size:
30.5 x 21 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
51746
Place/Date:
London / 1802
Size:
23 x 23 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
55095
Place/Date:
London / 1795
Size:
29 x 21.5 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
10438
Place/Date:
London / 1802
Size:
31.5 x 32 inches
Condition:
VG
Stock#:
55304
Place/Date:
New York / 1777 (1877)
Size:
31 x 22 inches
Condition:
VG-
Stock#:
m0265