By ELIZABETH MANGAN and JAMES A. FLATNESS
The Geography and Map Division acquired during the past year a number of historic maps, globes and panoramas. Among them are what may be the first map to recognize the United States.
Didier Robert de Vaugondy's Carte du Canada et des Etats' Unis de l'Amérique Septentrionale was produced in Paris by Jean Baptiste Fortin in 1778. Mary Pedley, author of Bel et Utile (Tring, Herts., England: Map Collector Publications, 1992), notes that Fortin changed the title to include Etats-Unis de l'Amérique Septentrionale, "thereby making it one of the first maps (if not the first) to recognize the existence of the United States. Its publication must have followed the signing of the alliance between France and the fledgling United States on Feb. 6, 1778."
Also acquired was A New & Exact Mapp of the Island of Jamaica, by Bochart & Knollis, printed in London for Charles Harper in 1684. This early large map of Jamaica was originally bound into the Laws of Jamaica, 1684 and contains extensive information on the physical, cultural and economic landscape of the island, one of the most important English colonies of the 17th century.
Julius Bien's 1858 Preliminary Chart of Charleston Harbor and Its Approaches is signed by Maj. Gen. S.W. Crawford, a Union officer at Fort Sumter. It is accompanied by an 1869 letter from Crawford that provides historical background on the Confederate bombing of the fort. It is possible that Crawford had this hydrographic chart with him during his duty at Fort Sumter.
The Library acquired an 1837 map of Hawaii, titled Na Mokupuni O Hawaii Nei, that is drawn by Kalama, a Hawaiian cartographer, and produced at the printing press at the Lahainaluna missionary school in Hawaii. The map was intended for the instructional use of Hawaiian students, and represents the Library's earliest example of the rare maps printed at the Lahainaluna Press.
Two unique panoramic maps have also been added to the collections in the past year. These are the only known copies of Philmont, N.Y., 1881, by an unknown author; H.H. Bailey's Elmira, N.Y. 1873; and a previously unrecorded panoramic view, Derby, Shelton and East Derby, Conn., 1898, by Landis and Hughes. The Library also acquired W.G. Fonseca's Winnipeg, 1884, produced in Ottawa, which contains 22 border vignettes. The only other copy of this view is held in the National Archives of Canada.
The Library's globe collection has also grown through the purchase of The Excelsior (6.8 inches in diameter), manufactured by I.S. Wachob & Co. in Scranton, Pa., around 1870; The Franklin Terrestrial Globe (12.4 inches in diameter), produced in Troy, N.Y., by H.R. Nims & Co., between 1869 and 1885; and a Persian manuscript celestial globe hand-painted on a solid wooden sphere (5.2 inches in diameter), produced around 1650. It was purchased for the Library by the Madison Council, the Library's private-sector advisory and support board. This is the only pre-1900 Islamic globe in the Library's collection and the only known wooden Islamic globe currently held in the United States.
Mrs. Howard Ahmanson of the Madison Council also purchased Atlas General de la Chine, De La Tartarie Chinoise, et Du Tibet, by J.B. D'Anville, published in Paris by J.A. Dezauche around 1790. It includes 50 numbered maps and plans, eight of which were not in the 1737 edition of the atlas, and 14 plates of cultural and ethnographic interest that were also not part of the earlier edition. The Madison Council's Ray Nasher purchased Louis Charles Desnos's Nle. Carte d'Amerique ... Septrentrionale et Meridionale ..., produced in Paris in 1781 as an engraved, hand-colored wall map on four sheets joined with attached borders and measuring 45 by 42 inches.
An atlas of note acquired during the year includes Petrovich Fedor Litke's Atlas du Voyage autour de Monde de la Corvette Seniavine fait en 1826, 1827, 1828 et 1829 ... published in St. Petersburg in 1832, which illustrates the 1826-1829 circumnavigation and exploration of the North Pacific (Bering Sea) and Caroline Islands under the command of P.F. Litke.
Ms. Mangan is head of the Technical Services Section in the Geography and Map Division. Mr. Flatness is a cartographic specialist in the division.