This is a 1906 Indexed County and Township Pocket Map and Shipper’s Guide of Colorado published by Rand McNally & Co. The folding pocket map was published and engraved in Chicago and is hand-colored. This beautifully detailed map would have served not only travelers, but those shipping goods to Colorado, and relocating to the area. All thirty-five railroads in the state at the time are named and shown in bright red lettering. In the left margin, a list of “Chief Cities” and their populations are shown down the length of the map. As explained in the bottom left corner, the “Relative Importance of Places shown by Size of Type,” meaning the larger text represents a higher importance.
Included in the framing is the original booklet cover for the traveler’s map with a description of the contents. The booklet cover names the publisher, the type of map, and special qualities. For example, it advertises the inclusion of the complete railroad system, all counties, cities and villages, lakes, rivers, etc. Additionally, the census numbers is advertised as the most up to date for accuracy and reliability.
During the late 19th century and early 20th century, Colorado’s population and infrastructure was quickly growing. After the initial mining boom in the mid-19th century and subsequent statehood granted in 1876, Colorado continued to grow its population. Railroads played a huge role in the state’s economy for general transportation and as natural goods were shipped across the country. Travelers first coming to the nascent state would have needed portable pocket maps such as this one to understand the area but professional shippers could also make good use of the information presented. Knowing where rivers, cities, railroads, etc. are was instrumental when planning a shipment route and this pocket map would have provided all of the necessary information.
The publisher, Rand McNally began in 1856 printing train directories, travel guides, and newspapers. In 1872, the company printed its first map and soon earned significant fame for their annual atlases. Alongside atlases and newspapers, Rand McNally also produced traveling maps such as the one presented here. Today, the company is still around and produces many modern maps and traveling resources.
Overall good condition for age and use. The 1906 map’s colors are slightly faded, however all of the text and lines are clearly visible. There are a few horizontal and vertical creases from where the traveling map has been folded into the booklet but there are no tears or loss. The booklet cover is worn from use, with some chips along the edges, but otherwise all text is legible and clear. The map and cover together are beautifully framed according to archival standards with UV protective glass and non-acidic materials.
Framed Dimensions: 33" H x 39" W x 1.5" D
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