Auction 163, Lot 441

"Report of Explorations Across the Great Basin of the Territory of Utah for a Direct Wagon-Route from Camp Floyd to Genoa, in Carson Valley, in 1859", Simpson, James H. (Lt. Col.)

Subject: Exploration and Surveys, Utah

Period: 1876 (published)


Color: Black & White

9.5 x 12 inches
24.1 x 30.5 cm

This is the report of (then) Captain Simpson's explorations in Utah Territory during 1859. While this report was submitted in 1861 it was not published until 1876 because of the Civil War. The report covers a broad range of topics from geography, geology, zoology and history that Simpson observed as he explored a route from Camp Floyd (near Salt Lake City) to Carson City, Nevada. This route was extremely important in the country's westward expansion as his route reduced the distance from the east to San Francisco by more than 250 miles. Not surprisingly, it was quickly adopted by the overland mail, pony express and the telegraph. This complete report includes 495 pp. of text, 22 illustrations and three maps. The first map is entitled Map of Wagon Routes in Utah Territory (47.5 x 26") which details Simpson's explorations as well as those of Fremont, Stansbury, Gunnison, and Beckwith. The other maps are Map of Route of Father Escalante from Santa Fe to Lake Utah and Back by Way of Oraybe, Zuni & Acoma 1776-7 (9.5 x 8.7") and Lines of Equal Magnetic Dip (6 x 6.6"). Quarto, hardbound in green cloth with faux leather title labels with gilt title on spine.

References: Howes #S501; Sabin #81355; cf. Wagner-Camp #345; Wheat (TMW) #999.


The map of Wagon Routes has light toning, minor offsetting, and separations along the fold intersections with a couple of small areas of loss, as well as a long separation at top left (B). The two smaller maps have light toning (B+). The plates are in near fine (A) and very good (B+) condition with minor toning mostly along the edges of the sheet, and an occasional spot of foxing, although one large folding plate has several fold separations. The text is lightly toned. The hinges are starting and the covers are lightly soiled with bumped corners.

Estimate: $700 - $850

Sold for: $500

Closed on 6/14/2017