Catalog Archive
Auction 153, Lot 243

"Preliminary Surveys of Harbors on the Western Coast of the United States", U.S. Coast Survey

Subject: Santa Cruz, California

Period: 1854 (dated)


Color: Black & White

12.6 x 12.3 inches
32 x 31.2 cm

The Office of Coast Survey is the oldest U.S. scientific organization, dating from 1807 when Congress directed that a "survey of the coast" be carried out. By 1836, it was called the U.S. Coast Survey and in 1878, the name was changed to the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey. Today the Office of Coast Survey is a division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NOAA.

The survey teams, composed of civilians as well as Army and Naval officers, charted the nation's waterways and produced a wide array of reports, survey charts, hydrographic studies of tides and currents, astronomical studies and observations, and coastal pilots. These charts are an important record of the changing nature of the nation's coastlines. In additional to coastal charts, the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey produced land sketches, Civil War battle maps, and the early aeronautical charts.

This terrific chart is from the first official scientific reconnaissance of the Pacific coast. The main portion of the chart shows Santa Cruz Harbor and Vicinity. Details include the town and mission with fully engraved topography inland. In the harbor scores of soundings are given along with tables on tides and other information. Point Santa Cruz is located. Above this map is another on the same scale illustrating Point Ano Nuevo Anchorage, which continues the Santa Cruz map. At upper right the inset Sub-Sketch Showing the positions of Santa Cruz & Ano Nuevo Harbors continues north to San Francisco Bay. The map was drawn under the command of James Arden Lieut. USN with topography by A.M. Harrison. Engraved by A. Maedel, J. Young & C.A. Knight. The map is embellished with a magnetic rose and the seal of the Coast Survey Office.


Condition: B

A crisp impression issued folding with light toning along the folds and 8 small worm holes with minor loss of image. The sheet has been remargined at left with old paper, with neatline seamlessly replaced in facsimile.

Estimate: $100 - $130

Sold for: $50

Closed on 5/20/2015