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COLLINS, William, Sons & Company

Collins' Series of Atlases. Atlas of England and Wales, containing Maps of all the Counties

William Collins, Sons & Company, London, c.1877
Octavo (185 x 120 mm.), full contemporary soft bound green cloth, ornate blind panelled boards with decorative central gilt title to upper board, later endpapers, gutter separating from the block. With typographic title, Preface, Contents and 43 maps comprising one general and 42 maps of English and Welsh counties, all in full original colour, Yorkshire folding with small split, 2 Welsh counties stuck together, otherwise in good condition.
William Collins (1789-1853) began his business in Glasgow, which was continued by his son, also William (1817-95). The latter was knighted in 1881. In 1877 they published Collins’ Series of Atlases. Atlas of England and Wales, containing Maps of all the Counties. The Preface for it explains that the maps were first issued as a series of County Geographies from about 1872. The atlas commences in the north with Northumberland and works its way south at Surrey before covering the Welsh counties. ‘It occurred to the publishers that the Maps alone, published in a convenient form and at a reasonable price, might be acceptable to the public at large.’ A few combine counties into one map. Each bears a plate number in varying positions outside the border and the imprint below of Collins. The mapmaker is Edward Weller whose name is found in the titles to their first issue as ‘County Geographies’. There is also an dated issue of the atlas, their priority is unknown but this undated issue is generally thought to be later. The British Library received its undated copy on 14 June 1877, the Preface here is dated May 1877. The business was continued by a third generation under William Collins III (1846-1906), it is still going under the banner Harper Collins today. Batten & Bennett (2010) 152; Burgess (2009) 181; Carroll (1996) 131; Hodson (1974) 120; Tooley’s Dictionary (1999-2004).
Stock number: 10325

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