Catalog Archive
Auction 178, Lot 91

Features the Short-Lived Franklinia and Morgania

"Map of the United States, Canada &c. Intended to Illustrate the Travels of the Duke de la Rochefoucault Liancourt", Rochefoucald Liancourt, Francois Alexander

Subject: Eastern United States & Canada, Franklin

Period: 1799 (dated)

Publication: Travels Through the United States

Color: Black & White

13.3 x 15.9 inches
33.8 x 40.4 cm
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This very uncommon map depicts the nascent United States with several interesting and unusual features. In New England, Maine is shown with a truncated northern boundary, reflecting the British view of the border dispute. The Ohio Company land grant still appears north of the Ohio River, and Florida is divided between East and West. In the south, Georgia and South Carolina extend to the Mississippi River. A note above North Carolina and Tennessee states "Northern Boundary of North Carolina as far as the South Sea." Within Tennassee's boundary, near the border with North Carolina, is the proposed state of Franklinia. In 1785 settlers in present-day western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee organized a state government to be named in honor of Benjamin Franklin. Congress turned down their appeal but the fledgling state maintained a legislature and governor until 1788. To the west of the Mississippi is Morgania. This region was named after George Morgan, a land speculator, who attempted to create a new colony in the then Spanish controlled Louisiana Territory near New Madrid (Morgan gave up this endeavor a few years later).

Beyond these fascinating boundaries and short-lived states, the original intent of the map was to show the travels of Francois Alexander Frederic La Rochefoucald Liancourt. A supporter of the French monarchy, La Rochefoucald Liancourt fled to England and then the United States during the French Revolution. He spent 3 years in exile in North America and published an account of his experience upon returning to France in 1799. His work (not included here) describes in detail the political constitution, natural history, physical geography, agriculture, and the customs of the inhabitants of the United States.

This is the second state of the map, engraved by Smith & Jones and published by R. Phillips.

References: Dotson & Baker (OWA) #14.2; Baynton-Williams #11; McCorkle #799.9; Sabin #39057.

Condition: A

A nice impression, issued folding with an extraneous crease at right and archival repairs to a short tear at right and a tiny split at one of the fold intersections.

Estimate: $1,400 - $1,700

Sold for: $1,200

Closed on 6/10/2020