Catalog Archive
Auction 151, Lot 188

"Map of an Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains in the Year 1842 and to Oregon & North California in the Years 1843-44", Fremont/Preuss

Subject: Western United States

Period: 1845 (published)

Publication: Senate Ex. Doc. 174, 28th Congress, 2nd Session

Color: Black & White

51 x 30.5 inches
129.5 x 77.5 cm

This is the large edition of the influential map that details John Charles Fremont's epic exploration of the American West. Fremont and his traveling companion and topographer, George Carl Preuss, launched the expedition from the frontier settlement of Westport at the juncture of the Kansas and Missouri Rivers. There Fremont first met Kit Carson who signed on as guide to the expedition. Traveling across the Rocky Mountains at South Pass to the Columbia River in Oregon Territory, they then continued south along the Sierra Nevada nearly to the "Pueblo del los Angeles", northeast to Lake Utah and finally east to the Arkansas River. Fremont's map and report had a profound influence on emigration to the Far West as his westward route eventually became the Oregon Trail. Wheat, who called this "an important step forward from the earlier western maps" devoted seven text pages to its description. The map was drawn by Charles Preuss "whose skill in sketching topography...has probably never been surpassed in this country." There is much to study and appreciate in this rare map, but we return to Wheat for this short praise: "To Fremont and his magnificence map of his Second Expedition all praise. This is an altogether memorable document in the cartographic history of the West, and for it alone Fremont would deserve to be remembered in history."

References: Wheat (TMW) #497; Wagner-Camp #115.1.

Condition: B+

Issued folding with light toning, scattered foxing, and four unobtrusive tears (0.25" to 1") in a blank area just to the east of the Columbia river that have been closed on verso with archival tape.

Estimate: $1,300 - $1,600

Sold for: $900

Closed on 11/19/2014