Clive A. Burden LTD. Rare Maps, Antique Atlases, Books and Decorative Prints

The Mapping of North America

Mr. Philip D. Burden​
P.O. Box 863,
Chalfont St. Giles, Bucks HP6 9HD,
Tel: +44 (0) 1494 76 33 13

A very fine French manuscript map much of the east seaboard of North America. The title states that it is “taken from the original of London … according to Mr. Bellin’s map … augmented by several remarks.” Nicolas Bellin (1703-72) is identified as engineer to the king, a role he was given in 1741. The map itself is especially similar in outline to his ‘Carte de la Partie Orientale de la Nouvelle France ou du Canada’ found in Pierre Francois Xavier Charlevoix’s ‘Histoire et description … de la Nouvelle France’, published in 1744. Which English map is used as a source is unclear, no printed map appears to be it and therefore a manuscript one is more likely.

The years 1743–48 saw the outbreak of King George’s War which was the American portion of the War of the Austrian Succession in Europe. Conflict only occurred between 1744-45. News arrived at the great fort of Louisbourg on Isle Royale in May 1744. The French immediately launched attempts on English possessions at Canso and Annapolis Royal, the capital of Nova Scotia. The major conflict of this period was the British capture of Louisbourg following a six-week siege. None of these are recorded on the map indicating is likely construction circa 1744. Land claimed by Britain is identified as coloured in green, those of the French in yellow.

T0 the west Philadelphia is curiously shown at a higher latitude than New York. The Ohio river is identified as the ‘l’oyo au la bell Riviere’. To the south are the ‘chaoanons’ [Cumberland River] and ‘Casquinambaux’ [Tennessee River]. The legend provides extensive detail on the postal delivery network in the American colonies, complete with days of the week for delivery and arrival. The postal roads themselves are illustrated. A fascinating French manuscript map drawn on the eve of the French and Indian War. Provenance: Fischenbach Castle Library, Franconia, Germany. Kershaw (1997) 684; McCorkle (2001) 744.2.


Carte d'une partie du Nord Amerique dans La quelle se trouvent les Isles et les provinces Suivantes. L'Isle de la Terre-neuve avec L'Isle du Cap-Breton et toutes les autres Qui se trouvent dans La Mer du Nord Amerique dans Le Golfe et Le Fleuve de St. Laurent; La plus grande partie du Canada ou Nouvelle France orientale, une partie de la Baÿe-Hudson, L'Acadie. La Virginie divisée en ses provinces, comme La Nouvelle Ecosse, L'Angleterre, Jork, Pensilvanie, vest et east Yerseÿ, Maryland, Virginie, et d'une partie du Nord-Carolin, toutes Les provinces qui sont sous La domination des Anglois sont tirées de L'Original de Londre et le Canada, avec La Baÿe-Hudson, selon La mappe de Mr. Bellin... augmentée de plusieurs remarques

840 x 1220 mm., watercolour with pen and ink, in four sheets mounted on linen edged in green paper, some wear to the margins, otherwise in good condition.
Stock number: 9016


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