THE GERMAN EDITION OF THE FIRST DETAILED LARGE-SCALE MAP OF NEW ENGLAND

 

$7,500

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AUTHOR:

[JEFFERYS, THOMAS]

TITLE:

A Map of the Most Inhabited Part of New England. London, published by Tobias Conrad Lotter, Augsburg, 1776

CONDITION:

Four joined sheets, each measuring approximately 20” x 19” for a total measurement of 40” x 38-3/8”. Inset plans of Boston and Boston Harbor. Full original color. Excellent condition.

DATE:

1776

DESCRIPTION:

The German edition of “The first detailed large-scaled map of New England and one of the earliest printed maps of Connecticut” (Goss).

"The most detailed and informative pre-Revolutionary map of New England ... not really supplanted until the nineteenth century" (
New England Prospect, 13).

The German edition follows the 1774 London edition in virtually all respects, including size, detail, and the use of English for all text. It actually improves on the London edition in the quality and sharpness of the engraving and in the richness of the original hand color. The two editions differ in just one way. New York and New Hampshire were locked in a bitter dispute over control of what is now Vermont. The London edition shows that region as under the jurisdiction of New York, while this German edition shows the area of Vermont attached to New Hampshire.

This map was the work of Braddock Meade (alias John Green), the geographical editor for the firm of the original London publisher, Thomas Jefferys. Meade was responsible for many of the best maps of America published in the period. He had “a remarkably advanced view on the collation of information and the correct presentation of it on maps…. [He] deserves to be remembered for breaking away from the old unreformed cartography, and for perceiving clearly, and following as far as existing data permitted, the methods upon which modern cartography was to be established” (Goss).

Meade used William Douglass’s 1753 map of New England as a base map, but adds a great deal of material taken from other sources. The township jurisdictions in what are now New Hampshire and Vermont were probably based on documents sent by the provincial governments of New York and New Hampshire to officials in London, to which the firm of Jefferys would have had access. Drawn on a scale of seven miles to the inch, the map was originally published in 1755, with an inset of Fort Frederick in the upper left corner. This 1774 edition appeared at the outbreak of the American Revolution, with the inset altered to a more useful street plan of Boston. The title cartouche includes a view of the Pilgrim’s landing at Plymouth Rock.

REFERENCES:

Phillips, Atlases, #3517, Maps #100-101.

Inventory No. 8092

Cohen & Taliaferro

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