Auction 170, Lot 234

Scarce, Engraved Version of Catalina Harbor Chart

"Reconnaissance of Catalina Harbor and the Anchorage on the N.E. Side of the Island California...", U.S. Coast Survey

Subject: Catalina, California

Period: 1852 (dated)


Color: Black & White

10.4 x 14.7 inches
26.4 x 37.3 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 is the scarce, seldomly seen version of this chart printed on heavy paper with a platemark (the more common editions were lithographed on thin paper). The chart details Catalina Harbor and part of the island. The harbor is filled information including soundings and bottom types in several areas. At bottom is a well-rendered and finely engraved sea-view elevation of the approach to the harbor with two sailing ships at anchor in the distance. The notes include sailing instructions, and the compass rose gives magnetic variation.


Condition: B+

A dark impression with some light extraneous creasing and minor buckling of the paper.

Estimate: $250 - $325

Sold for: $150

Closed on 11/14/2018