Small 8vo., (4 7/8 x 3 3/8). Fine folding engraved map “of the City of New-York” by David H. Burr expressly for this guidebook, engraved by S. Stiles & Co. (short tear to mount, not affecting image). Original publisher’s maroon roan, stamped in gilt (hinges split, unevenly faded to brown, a bit worn).
Provenance: Manuscript ownership inscription of John H. Atkin to recto of front free endpaper.
First edition. A nice example of an early New York guidebook. Contains the important folding map of New York, which includes lower Manhattan (up to West 34th Street), Brooklyn Heights (labeled “Brooklyn”), and Williamsburg. The map is drawn by David H. Burr (1803-1875), who served as the official topographer for the United States Post Office Department from 1832 until 1838, and the official geographer of the United States House of Representatives from 1838 until 1847. He is best known for his atlas of New York State. “The Atlas of the State of New York was published in 1830 [although it bears the date 1829]. It was the second state atlas produced in the United States; the very first was the 1825 ‘Atlas of the State of South Carolina’ produced by Robert Mills. Although [Surveyor General Simeon] DeWitt provided information and sponsorship and put his powerful influence behind the project, the producer of the atlas was David Burr (1803-1875)...The Burr ‘Atlas…’ is a landmark document that constitutes one of the most precise cartographic records of the state. It contains a general map of the state, a large plan of New York City, and maps of each county...The Burr ‘Atlas…’ marks a major change. The whole state, the major city, each and every county is depicted in a uniform style and scale, with accompanying standardized statistical information and narrative. The state is given shape and form and substance in the atlas. All the counties are now joined together, a civil union is complete, all the land is subdivided, the marks of progress are recorded and celebrated...” (John Rennie Short, Representing the Republic: Mapping the United States 1600-1900, pp. 85-88).
With contemporary ownership inscription of John Atkin, a watchmaker listed in the directory, along with his address.