Presented is Timothy Ensign’s “Map of the United States,” published in 1828. The map is one of the first to show the United States stretching all the way to the Pacific Ocean. The map’s area covers Oregon to the Atlantic Ocean and Canada to Mexico. It also features a very prominent engraved portrait of George Washington, with inset views and maps of the Capitol, Washington, DC, Boston and a small map of North America.
Because this map predates the Texas Revolution, the Mexican American War, and the 1846 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mexico comprises much of the southwest, including California, Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and Texas. And yet, by including the large expanse of territory between the Mississippi River and the Pacific, the map is a mirror of American expansionist ambitions of the time.
Territorial expansion of the boundaries of the United States westward to the Pacific and beyond was at its peak at the time of this map’s publication. In 1803, President Thomas Jefferson’s Louisiana Purchase doubled the size of the country and the Lewis & Clark expedition of 1803-1806 sparked interest in the exploration and settlement of the newly acquired land. Expansionists eager to acquire Spanish Florida were part of the drive for the War of 1812 and Andrew Jackson’s invasion of Florida in 1818 and the subsequent Adams-Onís Treaty established an American claim to the Pacific Northwest as Spain renounced its claim to the Oregon Country.
By 1820, American pioneers had established many frontier settlements as far west as the Mississippi River. By the 1830's, the westward movement had pushed the frontier across the Mississippi, into Iowa, Missouri, and Arkansas. Several transcontinental wagon trails enabled settlers to move westward from the Missouri River. After going up the Missouri valley, the trails followed the Platte River and crossed the continental Divide at the South pass. It then continued down to the Pacific via the Snake River and Columbia valley. The southwestern trail linking the Missouri river to Santa Fe was also used by traders throughout the 1820s. Despite the more arid and hostile environment, the route opened up new opportunities of trading with Mexico and linked up with the Camino Real.
Evidence of these trails, early explorations, and settlements can be found on this map, in engraved detailed notes about the Missouri Territory, population and distance chart from Washington D.C. all the way to St. Louis, and notations of trader routes to Mexico.
Very good condition. Full professional restoration, with minor infill and a new linen backing. A few edge cracks have been stabilized as well. Original full color, only lightly faded.
Map has been archivally presented in a new wooden and gold frame with linen mats, gold spandrel, and UV glass. Framed dimensions: 36 1/2" H x 43" W x 2 1/2" D.
This map is available for pre-order, but will not ship until mid-October.
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