TANNER, Henry Schenck (1786-1858). United States of America. Philadelphia: 1829
Fine folding engraved map (45 6/8 x 61 inches) laid down on linen in 60 sections, trimmed with green silk, the title within a fine historiated cartouche lower right, and surrounded by insets and statistical information, with original hand-colour in outline. Original half red morocco, marbled paper boards chemise (broken and worn).
Tanner's landmark map of the United States as it was in 1829, extending beyond the Mississippi into present Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, etc.
The insets include city plans and environs, the southern portion of Florida, Oregon and the Mandan District, with profiles, sections, and a table of statistics of the United States.
Environs of Albany
Environs of Boston
Environs of New York
Environs of Philadelphia and Trenton
Environs of Baltimore and Washington
Environs of Savannah
Oregon and Mandan District
Outlet of Columbia River
Pittsburg & Environs
South Part of Florida
Physical Sections [ie profiles of Canals, Railroads and the Grand Portage]
Statistics of United States
Statistics of Western Districts
[WITH]: TANNER, Henry Schenck (1786-1858). Memoir of the Recent Surveys, Observations, and Improvements, in the United States... Intended to Accompany His New Map of the United States. 12mo., (7 x 4 inches). Contemporary marbled paper boards (recently rebacked in scarlet cloth).
Provenance: with Francis Edwards, 5/69; from the important cartographical library of Warren Heckrotte, his sale, Rare Cartography, Exploration and Voyages, part III, March 10th, 2016, lot 193
First edition. One of the best early wall maps of the United States, with latitude measured from Washington, D.C., making it a quintessentially "American" map. “While Mathew Carey was born in Ireland and John Melish was born in Scotland, Tanner represents the development of an American-born group of artisans. He was born in New York City but moved to Philadelphia. His brother was a partner in the firm of Tanner, Vallance, and Kearney, which published books, pamphlets and printed maps. Tanner trained as an engraver and worked on the maps that accompanied Melish’s ‘Travels’ (1812) and ‘Map of the United States’ (1816). Tanner soon extended his work to publishing and writing. The death of Melish provided an opportunity for a ‘geographer and map publisher’; by the 1820s, he had adopted those names. Tanner, like Melish, not only printed and published maps and books but also wrote much of the text (the demarcation between printers, publishers and writers was less rigorous than it is now)…
“Tanner also produced large maps of the country for public display. One of the largest was his 1829 ‘United States of America,’ which measured an impressive 117.7 cm x 151.3 cm drawn to a scale of 25 miles to 1 inch. It was engraved by James W. Steele (1799-1879), a native and lifelong resident of Philadelphia who worked for Tanner, Vallance, and Kearney. He also did portrait, landscape and historical engravings but later became a banknote engraver.
“After the simplicity of Melish’s maps, this Tanner map is more baroque looking, with elaborate cartouches, inserts and statistical tables along each border. It is a very busy map and one gets exhausted looking at it. It has detailed town maps of Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York, Boston, Pittsburgh, Charlotte, New Orleans and Savannah; inserts of southern Florida and Northwest Territory; and profiles of canals, including Erie, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Chesapeake. The statistical tables presented in the margins include population (divided into whites, free people of colour, slaves) and the numbers engaged in agriculture, commerce and manufacturing; and for each state: area, capital city, major cities, population, latitude and longitude. This is a map and a statistical compendium of progress in the United States. It is a map of progress of civil society, but a society deeply divided into racial categories. The map and accompanying table also represent the geographical representation of difference.
“The nation is divided into east and west in terms of representation. The eastern area has county names and boundaries, cities and roads marked off and a dense population. Western lands are shown as vacant. Illustrations 40 and 41 highlight the differences. In looking at the map, there is strong sense of teeming population, progress and civilization in the east, while the west lies open, full of vacant spaces and undefined boundaries. Tanner has yet to represent continental appropriation.
“Hung up on a wall, this map would have represented the mark of progress in the east, the increasing density and differentiation of the country, the creeping urbanization and especially the development of canals that marked human control over nature. This was the forward march of history; an elaborate display of city growth, increasing population, density, economic connectivity and specialization, the structure of civil society (county seats and boundaries), and social differentiation. The statistical tables show a nation growing, expanding, urbanizing and differentiating. To read the tables in this wall map is to see difference between north and south, urban and rural, slave and non-slave states, east and west.
“The map was accompanied by a memoir, published the same year as ‘Memoir of The Recent Surveys, Observations and Internal Improvements in The United States’” [as here] (John R. Short, “Representing the Republic,” pp. 150-151). Streeter Sale 3835; Howes T28; American Imprints 40603.