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,
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The name George Bradshaw (1801-53) is synonymous with the British Railways and the industrial revolution. He was the author and publisher of the railway guides which were such an important part of Victorian travel. Apprenticed to an engraver in Manchester Bradshaw shadowed the industrial revolution and began by publishing maps of the Canal networks in 1829. “Three important works by him dating from 1829-32 are his detailed maps of the canals in the Midland counties, Counties of Lancashire, Yorkshire, Derbyshire and Cheshire, and Southern Counties respectively. These are large scale regional maps on the scale of nearly six miles [actually two] to the inch, each map showing with great clarity the canals with their wharves, tunnels and locks, and their heights above the Old Dock still at Liverpool. Nearly all of the early railways in each region are also shown …” (Shirley).

This map is that of the Midland Counties, the heart of the Industrial Revolution. It extends from Newcastle-under–Lyme to Derby, Nottingham, Grantham and south through Northampton and Buckingham. Then westwards from there taking in Oxford, Cirencester, Stroud and Chepstow then north through Hereford, Worcester, Bridgenorth and Shrewsbury. In the centre is Birmingham with its network of canals neatly laid out. An Explanation lower right details the largest vessels which each lock will accommodate. The map is dedicated to Thomas Telford, President of the Institution of Civil Engineers. Shirley records that in 1830, the year this map was published, the canal system in England was near its peak of 4000 miles. Barely a further 100 miles was added in the ensuing years. It crosses the fascinating point when their use was about to wane and that of the railway was about to explode. It was only in 1825 that the first passenger railway was constructed between Stockton and Darlington. A magnificent map highlighting the industrial prowess of Britain at the time. Provenance: Jonathan Potter 1999 cat. 18 item 113; private English collection. Shirley (1987) pp. 28; Smith (1985) p. 91.


G. Bradshaw's Map of Canals, Navigable Rivers, Rail Roads & c., in the Midland Counties of England. From Actual Survey Shewing the Heights of the Ponds on the Lines of Navigation ...

Manchester, 1 February 1830
1320 x 1230 mm., early wash colour, dissected into 48 sections and laid on linen, with marbled endpapers, with publishers original full calf slipcase, ornate gilt borders with ornate gilt ruled compartments to the spine and gilt calf title label affixed, light wear, otherwise, the map in good condition.
Stock number: 7678


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