J.J. Young, from a sketch by H.B. Mollhausen. “Chimney Peak.” From Lt. Joseph C. Ives Report upon the Colorado River of the West, Explored in 1857 and 1858. Washington: GPO, 1861. Ca. 6 x 9. Lithograph by Sarony, Major & Knapp. Very good condition.
By the middle of the nineteenth century, the U.S. Government was interested in exploring the possibility of using the Colorado River as a route for transportation. In 1857, the army was authorized to send out an exploration, led by Lieutenant Joseph C. Ives to survey the Colorado River, including the Grand Canyon, and to “acquire knowledge of the surrounding area.” The party set off from the mouth of the Colorado River the last day of the year.
Exploring by river and land, the party included 27 men, including naturalist and geologist John S. Newberry, artist Heinrich Balduin Mollhausen, and geographer Baron von Egloffstein. This was the first time scientific expedition of the Colorado, predating John Wesley Powell’s expedition by a decade. The maps and prints from the expedition are an important document of the then almost unknown region. This print is particularly interesting as it shows the expedition’s ship, the U.S. Explorer, on the Colorado River north of Yuma, with a view of California’s Picacho Peak in the background.