Monday, March 7, 2011
Map Of The Day: Three Original Manuscript Maps That Shaped the Nation's History: "The Northern Neck" of Virginia. FAIRFAX, Thomas, sixth Lord Fairfax of Cameron (1693-1781)
WINSLOW, Benjamin. A Plan of the Upper Part of Potomack River called Cohongorooto, survey'd in the Year 1736. Titled and signed "Benj. Winslow" lower right-hand corner. Two sheets joined (16 x 42 5/8 inches to the neatline, 18 4/8 x 45 4/8 to sheet edge). A fine manuscript map drawn in pen and ink with ink wash, featuring the course of the Potomack River from the "Head Spring" at the summit of the Alleghenies to its junction with the Shenandoah River in the Blue Mountains; showing its islands, tributaries, abutting plantations, former Shawnee settlements, "colemines", and the mountains of the Blue Ridge in beautiful detail (some oxidization, edges chipped and expertly renewed with minor loss to the neatline lower right).
BROOKE, Robert. A Plan of Potomack River, from the Mouth of Sherrendo, down to Chapawamsick, surveyed in the year 1737. Titled and signed "Ro. Brooke" lower right-hand corner. Two sheets joined (25 x 17 6/8 inches to the neatline, 25 4/8 x 18 inches to sheet edges). A fine manuscript map drawn in pen and ink. Accurately showing the course of the river, complete with rapids and swamps, within the river boundary of Prince William County, recording 63 locations, tenants, creeks, and Piscattaway settlements. The legend along the lefthand side lists the names of settlers and sites including "MR. WASHINGTON'S" land, the future site of Mount Vernon, and home of George Washington from 1735-1739, and then from 1754; and the future sites of Georgetown and Alexandria, now the site of the Nation's Capital WASHINGTON D.C. (edges chipped and expertly renewed affecting areas of the neatline).
THOMAS, James, (1666- 1742). A fine manuscript map of the Potomac River as it runs through Westmoreland County in Virginia. . Two sheets joined (24 2/8 x 15 6/8 inches to the neatline). A fine manuscript map drawn in pen and ink and ink wash, decorated with a bar scale of miles surmounted by a representation of a pair of dividers in yellow and gray wash. Accurately showing the course of the river from the western boundary of Westmoreland at Cedar's Point, through the land owned by the Monroe, Mattox, Bridges, Pope, and the Washington families, and importantly GEORGE WASHINGTON'S BIRTHPLACE, to Yeocomoco River in the east which marks the boundary with Northumberland County (lower right-hand corner expertly renewed affecting the neatline).
THE FIRST ACCURATE AND DETAILED SURVEY OF THE POTOMAC RIVER Three unique manuscript maps, and all that survives of the original surveyor's charts which became the source material for the celebrated "Fairfax" map of Virginia: "THE COURSES OF THE RIVERS RAPPAHANNOCK AND POTOWMACK IN VIRGINIA, AS SURVEYED ACCORDING TO ORDER IN THE YEARS 1736 & 1737" [London: 1747], the most accurate map of Virginia until the publication of Fry and Jefferson's "A Map of the inhabited part of Virginia containing the whole Province of Maryland with part of Pensilvania, New Jersey and North Carolina" (1753). "THE SURVEY MARKED AN EPOCH IN GEOGRAPHIC INVESTIGATION OF AMERICA BY THE ENGLISH. NO EXPEDITION DOWN TO THIS TIME SEEMS TO HAVE ACCOMPLISHED AT ONCE SO EXACT AND SO EXTENDED AN EXAMINATION INTO THE INTERIOR" (Foster).
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