A Scarce Spanish Map of the Southwest
"[Map in Book] Carta Esferica del Reyno de Mexico y Parte de la America Setentrional... [in] Descubrimiento y Conquista de la America, o Compendio de la Historia General del Nuevo Mundo ... Tomo II",
Subject: Southwestern United States & Mexico
Period: 1803 (published)
Color: Black & White
18.1 x 12.5 inches
46 x 31.8 cm
This scarce map of the Southwest and Mexico was issued in the first edition of D. Juan Corradi's Descubrimiento y Conquista de la America ..., published in Madrid in 1803. The map incorporates the latest Spanish information available with cartography based upon Bernardo de Miera Y Pancheco's Plan de la Provinca Interna de el Nuevo Mexico (1778). It is quite unusual to see this level of detail on a printed map dated 1802, as this highly guarded information was not available to the public until Humboldt's landmark map of 1811. It shows the R.S. Buenaventura running southwest into the Great Salt Lake, and from the west the i>R. de los Dolores reaches too far inland and nearly connects to the lake. This misconception would continue until Fremont's explorations in the 1840s. Outside of the river systems, there is limited inland detail beyond a few place names and basic topographical features. The map is augmented by an inset of Mexico City and its surroundings. Drawn by Gonzalez and engraved by Morata. A highly unusual Spanish map of the American southwest.
The map is still bound into the rear of the volume that includes a frontispiece illustration of Hernan Cortez and 325 pages of text. Volume 2 only of a two volume book. 16mo, hardbound in contemporary calf with gilt title label on spine.
References: Sabin #10298; cf. Cohen [Mapping the West] p. 66.
The folding map is very good with light scattered foxing and a short binding tear at left that has been closed on verso with archival tape. Text is mostly clean and tight with some scattered foxing. Covers are scuffed and worn.