Auction 116, Lot 344

"Map of the Californias", Farnham, Thomas J.

Subject: Western United States & Mexico

Period: 1845 (dated)

Publication: Morse's North American Atlas

Color: Printed Color

Size:
13 x 15.5 inches
33 x 39.4 cm

This map was printed using the revolutionary cerographic process, a milestone in cartographic printing techniques. This early printed color technique was an important change in the way maps were produced and the only truly American cartographic publishing innovation.

This is a very nice, unfolded example of this cerographic map from the third volume of Morse and Breese's important atlas. The map shows Upper California just one year before the Mexican-American war, which resulted in Mexico's loss of the region to the United States. It locates the pre-gold rush settlement of "Suter's" Colony just east of the southwest flowing Sacramento River with a Volcano nearby which is likely the Marysville Butte. Mount Shasta is here named Mt. Jackson with the Sierra Nevada mountains located between it and the coast. Farnham details an emigrant route that travels up the Arkiansas River to Farnham's Pass then across the country of Brown's Hole, to the Bear River, around the north shore of L. Timpanigos (Great Salt Lake), eventually to the upper San Joaquin and on to the bay at Yerba Buena, today's San Francisco. The map was drawn by Thomas J. Farnham, author of Travels in the Californias, based on his talks with the trapper Ewing Young and a letter from Dr. John H. Lyman of Buffalo, N.Y., who had earlier traveled on the Old Spanish Trail from Santa Fe to Los Angeles. Of special interest are the small icons locating the twenty-one missions of Upper California. This map was also published in Franham's Travels in the Californias. A very nice example of this scarce pre-Fremont map.

References: Wheat (Gold) #20; Wheat (TMW) #494; Rumsey 5511.

Condition: A

Lovely impression with wide, original margins. Two light spots in map and a few spots in margins, else fine.

Estimate: $400 - $500

Sold for: $300

Closed on 9/20/2006

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