Catalog Archive
Auction 182, Lot 136

"[Untitled - Map of Proposed Routes of Western Railroads]", Throop, O. H.

Subject: United States, Railroads

Period: 1846 (circa)


Color: Black & White

15.9 x 10.1 inches
40.4 x 25.7 cm
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This important map of the United States shows the existing (finished and unfinished) railroads in the eastern states with a proposed railroad shown beginning at Prairie du Chin and stretching toward the Pacific and terminating at Fort Walla Walla. The map portrays the United States prior to the acquisition of California and the Southwest, with a large Oregon Territory and a large Texas. The map, engraved by O.H. Throop, was issued for Asa Whitney's report to Congress issued in 1846 and 1848.

Asa Whitney was one of the first backers of an American Transcontinental Railway. It was as early as 1830 that Whitney first became enthralled with railroads and foresaw their future role in business and transport. He believed there was considerable potential for trade with China, and that railroads to the Pacific Ocean would facilitate this commerce. Whitney's proposed route from Lake Michigan through South Pass to the Pacific was not accepted in part because of the growing sectionalism before the Civil War. However, the map and report are an important part of the railroad history of the United States.


Condition: A

Issued folding on a clean bright sheet.

Estimate: $180 - $220

Sold for: $130

Closed on 4/28/2021