Catalog Archive
Auction 196, Lot 154

An Essential Map of Virginia and Maryland

"Carte de la Virginie et du Maryland Dressee sur la Grande Carte Angloise de Mrs. Josue Fry et Pierre Jefferson", Robert de Vaugondy, Didier

Subject: Colonial Mid-Atlantic United States

Period: 1755 (dated)

Publication: Atlas Universel

Color: Hand Color

25.4 x 19.1 inches
64.5 x 48.5 cm
Download High Resolution Image
(or just click on image to launch the Zoom viewer)

This handsome map is the French edition of the Fry-Jefferson map - one of the most important 18th century maps of the region. Due to the rarity and high value of the four-sheet English version of the Fry-Jefferson map, this single-sheet French version is the earliest obtainable map to accurately depict the interior of Virginia beyond the Tidewater, and is an essential map for the Virginia map collection. This is the second state with border of Pennsylvania extended to the left edge of the map, published circa 1776.

The map details the coastline from Cape May in New Jersey to the Currituck Inlet and inland with finely engraved details of the interior regions of Virginia, the ridges, rivers and valleys of the Appalachians, and the Chesapeake and Delaware Bays. The locations of native villages and wagon roads are noted as well. Delaware is labeled as De La War Counties. While the title is in French, most of the information is in English.

Surveyor Peter Jefferson was Thomas Jefferson's father, and Joshua Fry was a commander in the colonial militia during the French and Indian War. They were ideal appointees for the project as they had accumulated a substantial amount of information from their work on the western frontier. Their knowledge, along with reports received from other explorers, produced the most detailed account of the inhabited parts of the colonies.

References: cf. Cumming (SE) #281; Pedley #470; Phillips (Maps) p. 49; Sellers & Van Ee #1432; cf. Wooldridge #104.

Condition: A

A nice impression with contemporary outline color on a sturdy sheet with the watermark of a Maltese cross encircled in rosary beads. There is a faint horizontal crease, foxing almost entirely confined to the blank margins, and several dampstains along the edges of the sheet. Remnants of hinge tape on verso.

Estimate: $2,000 - $2,300

Sold for: $1,500

Closed on 2/7/2024