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

The Mapping of North America

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

Previous Page Next Page
An early issue of the Boundary Commission report of 1885 before the inclusion of a plan of Salisbury which is replaced by a Memorandum slip stating that one ‘is in preparation, and will be issued shortly’. The Commission reported on proposed boundary changes to the election of Members of Parliament. It was the third occasion in which an attempt was made to equalise the representation of the population across the United Kingdom in the Houses of Parliament. The first major reform was undertaken in the Reform Act of 1832. This was followed by another distribution during the Reform Acts of 1867 and 1868 which proved unsatisfactory. By 1885 the industrial growth of the country and the population movements this had encouraged, had made the imbalance worse. This third Bill was the result of long and difficult negotiations between William Gladstone of the ruling Liberal Party and Lord Salisbury of the Conservative Party. It required the intervention of Queen Victoria to settle the course of action.

The Reform Bill of 1885 was to draw upon the Ordnance Survey maps in order to determine the boundaries of divisions. The direct consequence of the Bill was the decline of the control of Parliament by the aristocracy. For the first time the number of MPs who represented industry and commerce outnumbered those connected with the landed gentry. The first volumes contains all of the English counties and four Welsh counties as called for. They are all bound in strict alphabetical order. Those of the West Riding are divided into three separate maps and those of Lancashire into four. Of the Boroughs, 15 relate to London. This report appears to be extremely rare, indeed this example is the last complete one we could find in auction having sold at Sotheby’s on 6 December 1976. It is one of the most influential ‘atlases’ in British history. This example once belonged to Joseph F. B. Firth who wrote on the ‘Reform of London Government and of the City Guilds’ in 1888. Provenance: gilt ownership of ‘Joseph F. B. Firth’ on both covers; withdrawn stamp from Croydon Public Library with their blindstamp to margins of many maps; private English collection. Smith (1985) XIV.

Report of the Boundary Commissioners for England and Wales; Report ... Scotland; Report ... Ireland

London, 1885
Folio, two volumes (365 x 270 mm. each), full contemporary brown cloth, gilt titles to spines, gilt ownership name to upper cover. With title pages to each: Part I, Counties pp. 196, with 50 largely folding county maps in early outline colour; Part II, Boroughs pp. 100, with 37 largely folding plans, in early outline colour, in good condition.
Stock number: 9953


Send us your name and email address.
We'll add you to our subscriber list and alert you to new catalogues and similar news