Auction 136, Lot 65

Rare cube-style puzzle map of the United States

"[Set of 6 Puzzle Maps]", Anon.

Subject: Puzzle Maps - United States

Period: 1865-66 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

7.8 x 10 inches
19.8 x 25.4 cm

This extraordinary and complete puzzle consisting of six maps, including the United States, and five regional maps. The map are on the sides of 20 wooden cubes. Getting the puzzles in the correct order is not easy and reminds one of working with a Rubik's Cube. The cubes fit into the original wooden box that has the guide map of the U.S. pasted on the cover with a decorative border mounted around the edges. The other sample/guide maps store in the box, above the wooden cubes. A rare cartographic curiosity that has survived fairly well given its purpose as a game. Not dated and mapmaker is unknown. Correctly arranged, the cubes make the following maps, each measuring approximately 8.5" x 6.5".

Map of the United States. Arizona is in possession of the southern tip of Nevada and Utah's border with Nevada is a full degree of longitude west of today's 116°. Wyoming Territory has the sloped western boundary giving up a large area to Idaho.
States of Maine, New Hampshire Massachusetts, Vermont Connecticut & Rhode I.
States of New York. Pennsylvania Maryland. New Jersey. Delaware & Virginia..
States of Illinois. Indiana. Ohio. Kentucky & Tennessee.
States of Arkansas. Mississippi. Louisiana & Alabama.
(United States of North America) N. & S. Carolina Georgia & Florida.



The cubes are very nice with just a little chipping or paper lose at some edges (B+). Box is missing the three of the four wooden sides, US map on cover has some abraded areas including small loss to part of Wyoming and Nebraska (C+). The sample maps are generally very good (A) or (B+) due to a spot or two. The Arkansas map has a small part missing at upper margin just into map border.

Estimate: $400 - $600

Sold for: $425

Closed on 6/1/2011