By: Joseph H. Colton
Date: 1856 (published) New York
Dimensions: 16 x 27 inches (40.5 x 68.5 cm)
This is an original antique map of the United States of America, published by Joseph H. Colton out of New York in 1856. The map is color coded by state and shows railroads, major wagon roads, routes of historic explorers, rivers, lake, canals, ports, large towns and small villages of the mid-19th century.
The map was made at an interesting point in American history. Gold had recently been discovered in California, Texas had joined the union, and the United States had extended its claim of western territory by way of the Mexican-American War. The philosophy of Manifest Destiny was driving settlers west in an attempt to join the country from coast to coast, while at the same time the country wad growing more divided over the continued exploitation of slavery which would ultimately lead to the American Civil War in a matter of years.
Interesting geographical elements worth noting in this map include the western frontier divided into large territories of Minnesota, Nebraska, Kanzas, Indian Territory, New Mexico, Utah, Oregon, and Washington. The location of several Native American tribes are provided, some of which include the Mandans, Sioux, Pawnees, and Blackfeet. While many tribes are not noted, the map does a good job of recognizing every military fort or outpost including Ft. Laramie, Ft. Defiance, Ft. Benton, Ft. Union, Ft. Bridger, and Bendts Ft. to name a few. Additionally, the routes of important explorers and military commanders can be traced including that of Lewis and Clarke, Fremont, Kearny, and Marcy.
Condition: Map is in B+ condition with fine original color on clean paper with ample margins on all sides. Some light paper toning and minor chips and tears exists along the outer edge of the page. The centerfold also shows some browning of the paper, which is common among these maps.
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