1837 Robert E. Lee Map of Saint Louis (St. Louis) Harbor, Missouri
Description: A scarce 1837 map of the Mississippi River in the vicinity of St. Louis, Missouri by Robert E. Lee. Centered on the Mississippi River and oriented to the west, this map covers from Cahoe Island, past the sprawling city of Saint Louis, northwards as far as Cascarot Island. The detail through is stupendous with individual buildings, farms, and stores alongside the river being noted - often with family names.
The map presents a plan prepared by then 30 year old Robert E. Lee, an Army Corps of Engineers First Lieutenant, to build a dike to resolve the problem of Bloody Islands, seen here just north of St. Louis. Bloody Island began forming around 1800 causing the main channel of the Mississippi to flow on the Illinois side of the island, thus silting up Saint Louis harbor. Lee dyke, presented here in two sections, was intended to force the main channel of the Mississippi to west of the island. The action of the river would thus wash away the silt collecting in Saint Louis Harbor. The project was successful and 20 years later, the island was subsumed into the Illinois shoreline.
The survey work behind this map was completed by a party under the command of Robert E. Lee. It was drafted by M. C. Meigs, and Henry Kayser. The engraving and printing was accomplished by W. J. Stone of Washington, D.C. It was published a Senate report for the 25th Congress, 2nd Secession, 1837.
Date: 1837 (dated)
Source: 25th Congress, 2nd Session, Senate Doc. #139 (Washington) 1837).
References: Koepp, D., Exploration and mapping of the American West: selected essays, no. 316.
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Size: Printed area measures 42 x 18 inches (106.68 x 45.72 centimeters)
Scale: 1 : 12000
Condition: Very good. Some creasing. Backed with archival tissue. Some wear and toning on original fold lines.
Code: SaintLouisHarbor-robertelee-1837 (to order by phone call: 646-320-8650)
Tags: Robert E. Lee , Mississippi River , St. Louis