1887 Pocket Map Version of the U.S. Geological Survey Map of western Nantucket, Massachusetts
Description: This is a rare example of the c. 1887 U.S. Geological Survey map of the Muskeget Channel. Extends eastward from Marthas Vineyard to include Muskeget Island, Tuckernuck Island, and the eastern parts of Nantucket. Offers copious topographical detail as well as some submarine detail as well as towns, roads, and some individual buildings. This map was originally dissected and mounted on linen by the Old Corner Book Store of 27-29 Bromfield Street, in Boston Massachusetts.
Date: 1887 (undated)
Source: Prepared in this format by the Old Corner Book Store, 27-29 Bromfield Street, Boston.
Cartographer: The Office of the Coast Survey (later the U.S. Geodetic Survey), founded in 1807 by President Thomas Jefferson and Secretary of Commerce Albert Gallatin, is the oldest scientific organization in the U.S. Federal Government. Jefferson created the "Survey of the Coast," as it was then called, in response to a need for accurate navigational charts of the new nation's coasts and harbors. The first superintendent of the Coast Survey was Swiss immigrant and West Point mathematics professor Ferdinand Hassler. Under the direction of Hassler, from 1816 to 1843, the ideological and scientific foundations for the Coast Survey were established. Hassler, and the Coast Survey under him developed a reputation for uncompromising dedication to the principles of accuracy and excellence. Hassler lead the Coast Survey until his death in 1843, at which time Alexander Dallas Bache, a great-grandson of Benjamin Franklin, took the helm. Under the leadership A. D. Bache, the Coast Survey did most of its most important work. During his Superintendence, from 1843 to 1865, Bache was steadfast advocate of American science and navigation and in fact founded the American Academy of Sciences. Bache was succeeded by Benjamin Pierce who ran the Survey from 1867 to 1874. Pierce was in turn succeeded by Carlile Pollock Patterson who was Superintendent from 1874 to 1881. In 1878, under Patterson's superintendence, the U.S. Coast Survey was reorganized as the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey (C & GS or USGS) to accommodate topographic as well as nautical surveys. Today the Coast Survey is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or NOAA. Click here for a list of rare maps from The United States Coast Survey.
Cartographer: The Old Corner Book Store of 27-29 Bromfield Street is one of Boston's oldest and most historic locations. The structure that the Book Store occupied, still called the Old Corner Book Store, was originally built in 1712 as an apothecary shop. In Carter & Hendee took over the space and reinvented it as a bookshop. Later it fell into the hands of publishers Ticknor and James Fields. Such important literary giants as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, James Russell Lowell, Henry David Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Harriet Beecher Stowe counted Fields among their close friends. Due to his many literary connections, this shop published some of the most important American books ever written, including The Scarlet Letter, Walden, and the Atlantic Monthly Magazine. The space remained open as a bookstore for nearly 100 years before closing c. 1950. Today the Globe Bookstore, in Harvard Square is considered its successor. The Old Corner Book Store building has been fully restored as a historic monument and is currently occupied by a jewelry store. Click here for a list of rare maps from The Old Corner Bookstore.
Size: Printed area measures 13.75 x 17.75 inches (34.925 x 45.085 centimeters)
Condition: Very good condition. Disected and mounted on linen in nine sheets. Margins trimmed. Minor water stain upper right quadrant.
Code: Muskeget-usgs-1887 (to order by phone call: 646-320-8650)