"[Puzzle] Dissected Outline Map of the United States of America", Milton Bradley Co.
Subject: Cartographic Miscellany, United States
Period: 1865 (circa)
Color: Hand Color
23 x 16.5 inches
58.4 x 41.9 cm
This complete, rare, and very early puzzle map of the United States was produced by Milton Bradley & Co. of Springfield, Massachusetts. The map shows basic detail of cities and railroads, including the Union Pacific and Kansas Pacific (which were not completed until 1869 and 1870). The map is dated circa 1865 as Wyoming Territory had not yet been organized from Dakota Territory, and Nevada had not yet gained its southern tip from Arizona and its eastern portion from Utah. The map is decorated by a train and a ship in the Atlantic with a fancy title at lower left.
The puzzle is housed in a paper box with paper title label attached to the top. The inside cover has a paper ad for Milton Bradley Japanese Backgammon which was intended to amuse children and keep them from the "temptations of the street." The puzzle pieces are made of 1/16" thick compressed paper board, and are all 4-sided with straight edges instead of the more common state shaped pieces.
Milton Bradley established his color lithography shop in 1860 and soon thereafter started making board games. During the Civil War he produced small games that soldiers could easily pack in their knapsacks - considered the first American travel games. Milton Bradley was an early advocate of the idea of Kindergarten and many of the company’s products were educational in nature. This is a great example of his early work.
The map has some minor spots and soiling. Original box is in very good condition with light wear.