1813 S. Lewis - A Correct Map of the United States with the West Indies from the Best Authorities

Extremely rare War of 1812 wall map - an early American masterpiece


A Correct Map of the United States, With The West Indies, from the best Authorities by Samuel Lewis 1813. 2nd Edition. Containing the Seat of War &c.

Map maker:

Samuel Lewis, T. L. Plowman

Place and Year:

Philadelphia, 1813


95 x 99.6 cm (37.4 x 39.2 in)


Copperplate engraving


Old color, partially refreshed.

Condition Rating:


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This extremely rare wall map of eastern North America extends from Newfoundland and Nova Scotia to the West Indies and the northern tip of South America.

The emphasis of the map is on the United States, whose actual borders extended farther west of this map with the Louisiana Purchase a decade earlier. The map was issued during the War of 1812 (1812-15) and is identified as the 2nd edition "Containing the Seat of War &c" above the top border. A large Mississippi Territory occupies present-day Alabama and Mississippi, and the new state of Louisiana makes an early appearance. East Florida is named, but the panhandle is left blank, likely due to the West Florida Controversy with Spain. Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan territories show very limited development but wagon roads connect the territorial capitals of Vincennes, Kaskaskias and Detroit.

Beyond the Mississippi River, information is limited to several forts and a number of named Indian tribes situated along the river systems including Osage, Pawnee, Delaware, and Caddo tribes. A "Traders House" is located along the Arkansas River.

Engraved by Hooker and published by T.L. Plowman, with title pasted on top of the map sheet. After Plowman's name is "entered according to act of Congress 22nd Mar."

We have found no other examples of the 1813 edition in historical sales records over the last 50 years. The Osher Map Library has this 1813 edition, David Rumsey has an 1817 (3rd) edition which appears to be cartographically identical (the title cartouche has been moved towards the east coastline), and the Library of Congress has an 1820 edition. The American Philosophical Society references an 1811 issue, which is presumably the first edition.

More details from the Rumsey description: "The U.S. portion of the map is identical to Maclure's 1809 base map. This map seems to have a long history. It first appears as the Maclure base in 1809 (indicating that it must have been published as a political map at that time, but we can find no record of it)...it has a new title (as above) and is dated 1817 - the title is a paste on slip which presumably covers the earlier title - A Map of the United States of America (as on Maclure). Ristow and Karrow then list an 1820 edition of this same map. The title mentioning the Seat of War indicates that the map had use during the War of 1812."


Repairs to margins, mounted on new linen.




Rumsey #3324; cf. Phillips (M) p. 880; cf. Ristow p. 266.