Mitchell Missouri 1848


“Map of Missouri.”  Philadelphia: S. Augustus Mitchell, 1848.  16 x 13 1/4. Lithographic transfer from engraved plate.  Original hand-coloring.  Very good condition

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For much of the middle part of the nineteenth century, the Mitchell firm dominated American cartography in output and influence.  S. Augustus Mitchell Jr.’s maps of the 1860s are probably the best known issues of this firm, but his father’s earlier efforts are excellent maps derived from H.S. Tanner’s atlas of the 1830s.  This map of Missouri is a good example of this work.  Topographical information is copiously presented, but it is the settlement and development of the state that is particularly interesting.  This is a period when Missouri was beginning to grow rapidly, and the cities and small towns are shown clearly.  Also of interest is the road system that is depicted crisscrossing the state in increasing complexity.  The counties are shaded with contrasting pastel colors, giving the map an attractive appearance.  It is obvious from the quality and attractive appearance of this map why Mitchell’s firm became so important.  A fine early American cartographic document of the state.