Auction 159, Lot 375

Rare Chart Published Four Months After the Battle of Cartagena

"A Plan of the Harbour Town and Castles of Carthagena...", Durell, Philip

Subject: Cartagena Bay, Colombia

Period: 1741 (dated)


Color: Black & White

27.8 x 19.4 inches
70.6 x 49.3 cm

This scarce chart of Cartagena was published just four months after the Battle of Cartagena and highlights the defenses of the port and bay as well as the locations of various fleets. The Battle of Cartagena was an unsuccessful large-scale attack by British and American colonial troops during the War of Jenkins' Ear, part of the War of the Austrian Succession. The attack was led by Admiral Edward Vernon, who, although unsuccessful in Cartagena, gained much acclaim for his victories elsewhere in the Caribbean. The map presents the town of Cartagena in a simple block pattern, with various forts and castles surrounding the bay, identified in a lettered key at top with notations of the number of guns in each. The surrounding countryside is filled with vegetation. Vignettes of three forts and two castles are depicted in insets, along with a long panoramic view of the city of Cartagena extending to Fort San Lazaro and the monastery La Popa. Two compass roses in the bay orient north to the left of the chart, and the bay is filled with notations of depth soundings, rocks and shoals. The locations of the fleets of Admiral Vernon, Admiral Chaloner Ogle, and Commodore Richard Lestock are identified in the key at top, with the locations of various shipwrecks also identified around Castle Grande and Boca Chica. The location where the British first landed is labeled just outside the entrance of Boca Chica. The map is dedicated to Vernon by Captain Philip Durell. Below the neatline at bottom is the list price for the map: "One Shilling Plain, and Colour'd Two Shillings." Adorned with an elegant rococo title cartouche. Separately issued, published on September 14, 1741 and sold by P. Fourdrinier. This was the first of two charts that Durell published of the Battle of Cartagena; see his later chart from 1743 here .

This chart is extremely rare, and we have only found 1 example of this map for sale in the last 30 years.

References: Kapp (MCC-77) #67.

Condition: B+

A nice impression with faint offsetting at top right, three very small holes in top corners of image, and archival repairs to a tiny centerfold separation and a separation along the platemark, both in bottom blank margin.

Estimate: $1,400 - $1,800

Sold for: $4,000

Closed on 9/14/2016