1863 Public Survey Map of Washington Territory
Description: This is an attractive example of the 1863 public survey map of part of the Washington Territory prepared by Anson G. Henry, Surveyor General of Washington Territory. It covers the region from the Pacific Ocean to Idaho. It includes significant survey work throughout with the state of the land survey noted via a series of blocks representing the survey grid. An explanation in the upper right quadrant explains the various lines on the blocks. The map identifies the proposed 'Steven's Route' for the Pacific Railroad, as well as important roads and trails and the location of several gold mines. Several forts are noted, including Fort Okinakane, Fort Dallas, Fort Wallawalla, Fort Steilacoom, and Fort Colville among others. Various cities, rivers, lakes, mountains, islands and various other topographical details are also noted. This map was engraved by J. Bien and prepared for issue in the 1864 congressional report, Message of the President of the United States to the Two Houses of Congress at the Commencement of the First Session of the Thirty-Eighth Congress.
Date: 1863 (dated)
Source: Government Printing Office, Message of the President of the United States to the Two Houses of Congress at the Commencement of the First Session of the Thirty-Eighth Congress, (Washington) 1864.
References: Rumsey 1079.009. Wheat, Carl Irving, Mapping of the Transmississippi West, 1540-1861, 1089.
Cartographer: The General Land Office, created in 1812, was an independent agency charged with the administration and sale of public lands of the western territories of the United States under the Preemption Act of 1841 and the Homestead Act of 1862. During a time of frenetic energy and rapid westward expansion, the Land Office oversaw the surveying, platting, mapping and eventually the sale of much of the Western United States and Florida. The structural layout of the western United States that we see today, and many of their district and county divisions, are direct result of the early surveying work of the General Land Office. More importantly, as a branch of the Federal Government in Washington D.C. and the only agency able to legally sell and administer public lands in the western territories of the United States, the General Land Office played a pivotal role in consolidating power away from the original states and into the hand of the centralized federal government. The General Land Office was absorbed into the Department of Interior in 1849 and in 1946 merged with the United States Grazing Service to become the Bureau of Land Management. Today the Bureau of Land Management administers the roughly 246 million acres of public land remaining under federal ownership. Click here for a list of rare maps from The General Land Office.
Cartographer: Joseph R. Bien was a topographer and an engineer working the later part of the 19th century. His name appears a number of state and regional atlases, including the important 1895 Atlas of New York. Most of Joseph Bien's work was published in conjunction with the New York Lithographing, Engraving & Printing Company, which was founded by Julius Bien. Joseph was almost certainly related to Julien, though whether he was a son, cousin, or brother, remains unknown. Click here for a list of rare maps from Joseph R. Bien.
Size: Printed area measures 22 x 18 inches (55.88 x 45.72 centimeters)
Scale: 1 : 1180000
Condition: Very good. Minor wear and toning along original fold lines. Professionally flattened and backed with archival tissue.
Printable Info Sheet
Code: Washington-publicsurvey-1863 (to order by phone call: 646-320-8650)
Tags: U.S. Government Map , Washington , Gold Rush , Stevens Route , Westward Migration