Catalog Archive
Auction 182, Lot 142

"Map of the United States Exhibiting the Present Status of Knowledge Relating to the Areal Distribution of Geologic Groups... [and] Map of the United States Exhibiting the Progress Made in the Geographic Survey [in] Fifth Annual Report...", U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

Subject: United States, Geology

Period: 1885 (published)

Publication:

Color: Printed Color

Size:
28.2 x 17.4 inches
71.6 x 44.2 cm
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This is the complete Fifth Annual Report of the Geological Survey under the direction of J.W. Powell. In addition to the Director's report and administrative reports, the volume features five papers including: "The Topographic Features of Lake Shores" by G.K. Gilbert; "The Requisite and Qualifying Conditions of Artesian Wells" by Thomas C. Chamberlin; "Preliminary Paper on an Investigation of the Archaean Formation of the Northwestern States" by Roland D. Irving; "The Gigantic Mammals of the Order Dinocerata" by Othniel C. Marsh; and "Sketch of Paleobotany" by Lester F. Ward. The volume is profusely illustrated by 143 figures within the text and 58 mostly tissue-guarded plates including the following two folding maps in the rear pocket:

A. Map of the United States Exhibiting the Present Status of Knowledge Relating to the Areal Distribution of Geologic Groups. This is the first published geological map of the United States by the USGS. It is generally referred to as the McGee map after the compiler. The legend at lower left names and color codes eleven different geological groups. There is also very fine detail of hydrology. Vast areas of the western U.S. remain blank, reflecting the infancy and inadequacy of western geological explorations at the time, and coincidentally emphasizing the need for more congressional funding. The mapping of the King, Hayden, Powell and Wheeler surveys are evident in the West, but little else. This was the most up-to-date map at the time, but was soon superseded by Hitchcock's 1886 map that augmented the western states' geological detail.

B. Map of the United States Exhibiting the Progress Made in the Geographic Survey. This map shows the progress of the United States geographic surveys. The primary focus is on the western states including Colorado, Utah, Nevada and California. The legend shows four different surveys: Triangulation, Area Surveyed by Geological Survey, Area Surveyed by Northern Transcontinental Survey, and Area Surveyed by other Organizations.

Quarto, hardbound in maroon cloth with gilt illustration on the front cover and gilt title on spine.

References:

Condition: B+

The maps are very good with some light color offsetting and a bit of toning at top where they fold into the rear pocket. Text and plates are very good to near fine with pleasant light toning. The hinges are starting and the covers are lightly worn with bumped corners.

Estimate: $300 - $375

Sold for: $150

Closed on 4/28/2021

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