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Striking and rare 1873 railroad map of the United States

Place/Date: New York / 1873
Sold
Title: The American Union Railroad Map of the United States, British Possessions, West Indies, Mexico and Central America
Technique
Lithograph
Dimensions
99 x 144 cm (39 x 56½ in)
Identifier
NL-00175
Coloring
Original color
Condition Rating
VG

Description

This rare and striking map represents a celebration of the recent completion of the Transcontinental Railroad, with bright hand coloring and a panoramic view at top titled “From the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean.”

The map includes a lot of detailed information, including side columns that give population statistics and brief descriptions of states and territories. An inset of Central America is found at bottom left. Relief is displayed using hachures; see for example the lovely representation of the West Indies.

Many railroad lines, both planned and completed, criss-cross the country. A fabulous wheel of clocks is indicative of the central role played by railroads in the standardization of time in the United States, which would take place ten years after publication of this map, at the General Time Convention of October 1883.

Complete with original marbled boards folder, which was issued for the sale of the map in Germany, with original front cover label: “Der Amerikanische Continent. Nuesten topographische und Eisenbahn-Karte Vereinigten Staaten, Britischen Besitzungen, Westindien, Mexico & Central-America. Aus der Artistischen Anstalt von Haasis & Lubrecht in New-York. Stuttgart. Im Debit Bei Wilhelm Lubrecht, Jun. 1873.”

Cartographer(s)

Condition Description

Map is backed with linen and sectioned for folding. Just minor wear, very good or better.

References

Modelski, Railroad Maps of the United States, 53 (1872 ed), 55 (1874 ed). Rumsey 3822.000

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