James Wimble: 1738 map of NC

In 1738, James Wimble’s chart of the coast of North Carolina was published in London. The lengthy title: To His Grace Thomas Hollis Pelham Duke of Newcastle Principal Secretary of State and one of His Majesties most Honourable Privy Council, &c. This Chart of his Majesties Province of North Carolina With a full & exact description of the Sea-coast, Latitudes, Capes, remarkable Inlets, Bars, Channels, Rivers, Creeks, Shoals, depth of Water, Ebbing & Flowing of the Tides, the generally Winds Setting of the Currents, Counties, Precincts, Towns, Plantations, and leading Marks, with directions for all the navigable Inlets; are Carefully laid down and humbly dedicated, by Your Grace’s most humble, most dutiful, & most Obedient Servant, James Wimble. Continue reading “James Wimble: 1738 map of NC”

A bad good authority?

In his 1854 report on the survey of Beaufort Harbor in North Carolina, Lieutenant James Maffitt stated the following:

…Wimble’s chart published in 1737 (one hundred and seventeen years ago,) gives eighteen feet as the depth on the bar at low tide. It is also stated on good authority that Lawson’s chart published in 1718 coincides with Wimble’s in the depth at low water.

John Lawson died in 1711. Furthermore, neither the original English version of Lawson’s map of Carolina, published in 1709, nor subsequent German and Swiss derivatives, show any soundings in the vicinity of Beaufort. I have been unable to locate a Lawson published map or manuscript map that shows soundings at the inlet to Beaufort, nor any map published circa 1718 that might have been misattributed to Lawson. The not-so-“good authority” is not named by Maffitt, so one is impeded in trying to investigate from that angle. Edward Moseley’s map of North Carolina, published in 1733, contains an inset of “Port Beaufort”. Perhaps that is the map to which the “good authority” was referring. If anyone has a better suggestion, please let us know via the “What’s on your mind?” comment box. Thanks.

Carolina map related articles in recent publications

December 2021 issue (No. 167) of The Journal of the International Map Collectors Society (aka IMCoS Journal) contains Boundaries of the Palmetto State: How royal instructions, survey errors, Indian Treaties, and negotiations with neighbours shaped South Carolina  by Edward E. Poliakoff.  IMCoS members have on line access to this current issue and all prior issues. A preview of the above essay is available on line, but you’ll have to join to read the full essay.

The Winter 2021 issue (No. 112) of The Portolan, the journal of the Washington Map Society, contains Hilton’s Carolina Pilotage with Shapley’s Chart before Locke and Lancaster, by Paul Hughes. The cover illustration for this issue is a 1662 ms map of Cape Fear River. Members of the Washington Map Society have on line access to The Portolan. The latest issue is currently being shipped to members but has not yet been posted on line (as of 1/19/22).

Map Seminar, Winston-Salem, NC

The long-awaited and twice postponed program, Cartography & Culture: Mapping the Early American South, will be held at the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA) in Winston-Salem, NC, on October 21-22, 2022. The organizers have created an outstanding program with an All-Star lineup of speakers. Further details on the program and registration are available here: https://mesda.org/program/mesda-fall-seminar/ .
This program has been generously sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Frank H. Holcomb of Houston, TX. I hope to see you there!

Bird’s eye views of North Carolina towns

Bird’s eye views are one of the most attractive map forms. They were most popular during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. They are particularly fascinating because their creation more often relied on the ingenuity of the artist cartographer than on an actual view from upon high. Continue reading “Bird’s eye views of North Carolina towns”

Mayodan – a mill town born in the wilderness

Mayodan – a mill town born in the wilderness, Posted on 28 April 2020 by crmaps . This is the second of two posts in the past two years that completely vanished from this blog a few months after being posted; even the image files for this post disappeared from the blog’s media library page. If anyone has an explanation, or even better, a preventive cure, please share via the “What’s on your mind?” comment box near the bottom of this page.

In the 1890s, the town of Mayodan developed almost overnight on the Mayo River in western Rockingham County, NC. A map dating from the founding of this town was recently brought to my attention by Michael Buehler, proprietor of Boston Rare Maps. Continue reading “Mayodan – a mill town born in the wilderness”

Rare Maps of North Carolina

In this blog post, we’ll list a few of the rarest of the rare maps of North Carolina published prior to 1800.  The list is anecdotal; a map makes the list if I don’t recall seeing an example sold in the past 20 years, despite the number of surviving institutional copies, or if I’m aware of no more than five extant copies. Let’s get started! Continue reading “Rare Maps of North Carolina”

Kocherthal 1709 map of Carolina

A very brief historical background on Kocherthal and the Palatines

Before we get to the map of the Carolina region published by Joshua Kocherthal in 1709, 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. If decades of war and famine had not yet instigated mass migration, what encouraged the Palatines to finally overcome inertia in 1709? Continue reading “Kocherthal 1709 map of Carolina”

Le Provincie Meridionali degli Stati Uniti x 4

…or a whole lotta Botta!

Four separate, but nearly identical, maps of the Carolinas, engraved and printed in Italy in the 19th century, are completely devoid of the letter “W”.   These four maps have an identical title, Le Provincie Meridionali degli Stati Uniti.  Continue reading “Le Provincie Meridionali degli Stati Uniti x 4”

Octagonal towns – better than circles

Octagonal towns.  A previous post discussed the abundance of circle towns in North Carolina (and throughout the South) and the various reasons behind this geometric town limit. The impracticality of a circular boundary, from a surveyor’s perspective, was also mentioned. What’s the solution to keeping the circular benefits in a way that would be practical to the surveyorr? The octagonal town, of course! Continue reading “Octagonal towns – better than circles”

MESDA Map Seminar – NEW DATE

This conference has been rescheduled for September 17-18, 2021. 

Cartography & Culture: Mapping the Early American South, a MESDA Map Seminar, will be held at the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts in Winston-Salem, NC, on September 17-18, 2021. The organizers have created an outstanding program. Further details on the program and registration are available here: https://mesda.org/program/mesda-fall-seminar/ . This program has been generously sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Frank H. Holcomb of Houston, TX. I hope to see you there!