Author: Thomson, John
Publisher: New General Atlas
Date published: 1814Copper engraving with original hand colouring. Overall size: 73.7cms x 53.2cms. Image size: 596mm x 500mm. Centrefold as published. Shows many important discoveries in the north west, including: Cook & Vanvouver's discoveries along the Pacific coastline; David Thompson's mapping of the Great Bend on the Missouri River, used by Lewis & Clark; and Alexander Mackenzie's discovery of the Mackenzie River (Canada's longest) entering the Beaufort Sea not the Pacific, as he had hoped while looking for the North West Passage) in 1789. Includes Mexico only to Monterey. The mountains of the Continental Divide are quite distorted and are labelled Rocky Mountains. The Missouri River is projected too far west and there is no Great Salt Lake. Along the western coast are a number of British names: New Norfolk, New Cornwall, New Hanover, New Georgia (in present-day Washington and Oregon) and New Albion (California). Many Indian tribes are named including Snake, Plume, Red, Blue, Wolf, and Beaver. Very good condition apart from a few marks in the margins - not very noticeable. John Thomson was one of the leading exponents of the Edinburgh school of cartography which reached its zenith between 1800 and 1830. Thomson & his contemporaries such as Pinkerton and Cary redefined European cartography by abandoning such 18th century decorative elements as elaborate title cartouches and fantastic beasts in favour of detail and accuracy. Thomson's principle works include the Thomson's New General Atlas published from 1814 though 1827 (from which this map originates) and his Atlas of Scotland. The Atlas of Scotland, a work of groundbreaking detail and dedication would eventually bankrupt the Thomson firm in 1830. His maps are prized today for the quality of their detail, their size and the attractiveness of the original colouring.