A very cursory historical background on Kocherthal and the Palatines
Before we get to Kocherthal’s 1709 map of Carolina, a very brief historical background is in order. The Palatine region of western Germany was devastated repeatedly by wars in the 17th Century and early 18th Century. Famine and poverty inflicted by constant war are frequently cited as reasons for emigration of German Palatines during this period.
An unusually harsh winter of 1708-09, the coldest in Europe in the past 500 years, exacerbated famine conditions and may have prompted the Palatines to consider relocation.1 If decades of war and famine had not yet instigated mass migration, what encouraged the Palatines to finally overcome inertia in 1709? The major catalyst for mass emigration of Palatines to the Netherlands or England and eventually to North America, it turns out, was a small “Golden book”. It received its nickname from the gilt lettering of the title page and/or cover.
The title of this book has been translated into English as “Extensive and Detailed Report of the Famous Land Carolina, Situated in the English America.”2 The “Golden Book” was authored by German Lutheran minister Joshua Kocherthal (née Josua Harrsch), who based its contents on earlier Carolina promotional tracts published in London. Continue reading →
On 30 October 1629, King Charles I issued a grant to Sir Robert Heath, his attorney general, for all the land in North America between 31° and 36° north latitude. This land was designated Carolana, i.e. “land of Charles.” During the next 150 years, Carolana made sporadic and wandering appearances on maps. Continue reading →
At the Historic Bath Exhibit Center, from now through June, an exhibit of maps dating from the 16th to 19th centuries will allow visitors to establish a better sense of North Carolina’s geography and place in history. The Bath State Historic Site in Bath, North Carolina, is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, please see this newspaper article. Other details about Historic Bath can be found on their web site, or call 252-923-3971.
The Swain Historical Map Collection, an exhibit of historical maps covering the Carolinas and North America at the Spartanburg Regional History Museum. For hours and location, visit their web site here.
C.M. Miller authored at least eleven North Carolina county maps (nine separate counties) during the early 20th Century. Who was this forgotten cartographer, and which counties did he map? Continue reading →
Cartographic historians and collectors of 18th Century maps of what is now Virginia and the Carolinas love “wow” maps, such as the Churton-Collet map of North Carolina and the Fry-Jefferson map of Virginia. A few maps, such as Carte de la Caroline Meridionale et Septentrionale et de la Virginie, receive no love at all and are essentially ignored. Why is that? Continue reading →
Renowned British map dealer, scholar, and author Philip Burden made an exciting discovery at the Admiralty Library in Portsmouth, UK. Burden discovered four previously unrecorded small charts of locations on the east coast of North America, bound within an extremely rare small atlas by Philip Lea. Continue reading →
A Conference on Sir Walter Raleigh
Four Hundred Years After His Death
On Thursday, September 6 through Saturday, September 8, 2018, fourteen leading scholars will share their knowledge and current research on the life and impact of Sir Walter Raleigh (1554?-1618). Raleigh 400: A Conference on Sir Walter Raleigh Four Hundred Years After His Death will be held at the Wilson Special Collections Library, part of the University Libraries on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The conference is open to the public but will be geared toward a scholarly audience. Advance registration is required. Admission is free, with the exception of the dinner and talk on Friday evening, September 7.
The conference is sponsored by the Wilson Special Collections Library’s North Carolina Collection and Rare Book Collection and the Program in Medieval and Early Modern Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Questions: Please call the North Carolina Collection at 919-962-1172.
Eighteenth Century South Carolina surveyor James Cook has been dead for over 200 years. Let’s make believe he’s still living and still surveying. What else would he be doing? He’d be suing several late 20th and early 21st century writers and publishers for libel. His case would be a slam dunk. Let’s examine the evidence of libel and then the facts. Continue reading →
One noticeable feature on a select few Carolina coastal charts published during the last half of the 18th century is a row of trees along the Grand Strand, a section of coast now dominated by high rise hotels and condos. Who “planted” these trees? Daniel Dunbibin or Nicholas Pocock?
Image credits: 1770 Pocock image courtesy of Boston Rare Maps. 1777 Le Rouge image courtesy of North Carolina Collection at UNC-CH. 1794 Norman image courtesy of the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library.
When the English shifted their colonization efforts north from Roanoke Island to the James River and Chesapeake Bay, they took the name “Virginia” with them. So what did they call North Carolina once they absconded with its original Virginia moniker? Ould Virginia, of course.
Theodor de Bry’s 1590 published engraving of John White’s map of Virginia was the first printed map focused specifically on what is now North Carolina. The second such map was published by John Smith in his 1624 book, The Generall Historie of Virginia, New-England, and the Summer Isles... Continue reading →