AN EXCEPTIONAL FOUR-SHEET WALL MAP OF ST. KITTS
A new and exact map of the Island of St. Christopher in America, according to an actual and accurate survey made in the year 1753. Describing the Several Parishes with their respective limits, Contents, & Churches, also the high ways, the situation of every Gentleman’s Plantation [&c.] …. By Saml. Baker Lieutenant In His Majesty’s Navy. [Dedication in the upper left corner:] “To the Right Honble. Lord’s Commissioners for Executing the Office of Lord High Admiral of Great Britain…. Saml. Baker.” London. [At lower right:] “Printed for T. Bowles in St.Pauls Church Yard & John Bowles & Son in Cornhil.” [1753.] Engraved by James Mynde. Inset: “The Leeward Caribbee Islands.” The map is flanked by “An Alphabetical List of the Subscriber’s Names.”
Four large folio sheets joined measuring 36” x 43”. Period outline color.
The first state of a rare, separately-issued map, the largest and most important of the early maps of St. Kitts. Sellers and Van Ee judged it to be “a detailed and carefully executed map,” that includes a vast amount of information, including sugar mills, churches, houses, the names of landowners, forts, depth soundings, shoals, anchorages, and topographical detail. The whole is beautifully ornamented in a lavish baroque style. A second state was published in 1780, and a third in 1800.
The list of subscribers, which contains about 225 names, is in effect a census of the major planters on the island. In addition, many high government officials both in London and the West Indies bought copies, a testimony to the excellence and significance of the map. These included the Lords Commissioners of the Navy; the Lords Commissioners for Trade & Plantations; the Commissioners for Victualling His Majesty’s Navy; Hon. George Thomas, Commander in Chief over the British West Indies; the Hon. Ralph Payne, Lt. Gov. of St. Christopher’s; and the Principal Officers of His Majesty’s Ordinance.
Tooley, “Printed Maps of St. Kitts, St. Lucia & St. Vincent,” (MCS 81), 28; Sellers & Van Ee, 1985. Not in National Maritime Museum catalogue.
Inventory No. 7995