Catalog Archive
Auction 151, Lot 136

Delisle's Influential Map of the Louisiana Territory

"Carte de la Louisiane et du Cours du Mississipi avec les Colonies Anglaises", Delisle/Dezauche

Subject: Colonial Eastern United States, Louisiana Territory

Period: 1782 (dated)


Color: Hand Color

25.6 x 19.3 inches
65 x 49 cm

This is the updated version of Delisle's influential map of the French possession of Louisiana that drew together the cartographic work of the previous half century and had a tremendous impact on the history of cartography. When originally published in 1718, it was the first detailed map of the Gulf region and the Mississippi, and the first to show the explorations of De Soto, Cavelier, Tonty, Moscoso and Denis. The map was designed for the political purpose of invalidating the English claims west of the Appalachian Mountains and laid claim to Carolina by the French, which provoked an angry English response. However, it is the cartography of the Mississippi Valley for which the map is notable today. The name Texas made its first appearance in print on this map, with the legendary Mission de los Teijas, established in 1716. The notation of Indiens errans nommes Chetis along the Gulf Coast is changed from the earlier editions, which noted that they were anthrophages, or cannibals. An inset of the Mississippi Delta and Mobile Bay fills the lower right corner. This is the Dezauche edition, which is a reissue of the second state of the original plate, showing the settlement of New Orleans, founded in 1718.

References: Tooley (Amer) p.22, #47; cf. Cumming (SE) #208; cf. Wheat (TMW) #99; cf. Martin & Martin #19.

Condition: A

A fine impression on watermarked paper with original outline color, a hint of offsetting, two short printer's creases adjacent to centerfold, and one unobtrusive spot at bottom center.

Estimate: $1,600 - $1,900

Sold for: $1,300

Closed on 11/19/2014