Auction 126, Lot 841

"A New Universal Atlas Containing Maps of the Various Empires, Kingdoms, States and Republics of the World…", Mitchell, Samuel Augustus

Subject: Atlases

Period: 1849 (published)


Color: Hand Color

14 x 18 inches
35.6 x 45.7 cm

The title continues "With a special map of each of the United States, Plans of Cities &c. Comprehended in seventy sheets and forming a series of one hundred and seventeen Maps Plans and Sections." This is a nice copy of this famous and highly sought after atlas, complete with all called for hand colored maps of the world, North America and the other continents, Oceanica, the United States and its territories, and numerous city plans.

The atlas concentrates mainly on the American continent, and features many important and desirable maps including a fine map of Texas with a transitional border. Contains the rare edition of "Oregon, Upper California & New Mexico" (ref: Wheat #630) which shows Gold Region configuration with a large area hand colored in yellow. The map of North America also contains the addition of "Gold Regions" to northern California. The entire west is Upper California and the Northwest is Oregon. A small New Mexico is squeezed between Upper California and Texas. The frontispiece is a hand colored, engraved diagram showing the lengths of rivers and heights of mountains. The title page includes a fine chromolithographic image titled "First Landing of Columbus in the New World."

Samuel Augustus Mitchell and his sons were the leading publishers of maps in the United States during most of the nineteenth century. Mitchell had come to Philadelphia around 1830 with the intention of improving the standard of geography textbooks. A New American Atlas, published in 1831, was his first work. Then, in 1845 he acquired the rights to Tanner's New Universal Atlas, and in 1846 he published his first edition of the present work. Mitchell published the atlas until 1850, when he sold the copyright to Cowperthwaite & Co. of Philadelphia, who continued to publish it until the mid-1850s, when it was purchased by Charles DeSilver.

Folio. Hardbound, frontis, chromolithographed pictorial title page depicting Columbus' arrival in the New World, table of contents, 70 hand colored maps. Bound in original marbled paper with red leather tips and spine. This edition was published by S. Augustus Mitchell, NE corner of Market & 7th Streets. An increasingly difficult to find atlas.


Condition: B+

The maps are generally very good or good plus due to a little marginal foxing or soiling, occasionally in the map image. More foxing in North Carolina and Tennessee. Two spots in Indiana and Illinois. Some foxing or staining to title page. Leather label on cover is missing and covers and spine are worn, abraded and bumped. Owners name on front blank end paper.

Estimate: $3,500 - $4,500

Sold for: $2,750

Closed on 12/3/2008