1842 Mather Map of Long Island, New York
Description: Issued prior to the American Civil War and the subsequent Long Island land rush, this is one of the most detailed and attractive large format maps of Long Island to appear in the 19th Century. Covers from New Jersey and Staten Island eastward as Montauk and Fisher’s Island. Includes parts of Westchester, New Jersey, Rockland County, and the Connecticut Coast. A large inset map in the lower right hand quadrant depicts Manhattan with a special focus on geological features and topography. Shows the partially completed Long Island Railroad as well as smaller roads and towns. Notes various important Long Island communities including the East Hampton, Bridgehampton, Southampton, Amaganset, Riverhead, and Sag Harbor, among others. In many cases individual buildings are detailed. The whole is laid out on a grid structure of ten mile squares. Prepared by W.W. Mather from the survey work of John Calvin Smith. Engraved by Endicott & Company for part one of Mather’s Geology of New York.
Date: 1842 (dated)
Source: Mather, W. W., Geology of New York, Part 1, 1842.
References: New York Public Library, Map Division, 01-5149. Haskell, D.,Manhattan Maps: A Co-operative List, 865.
Cartographer: William W. Mather (May, 24, 1804 - February 26th, 1859) was an important American geologist and natural historian. Mather was born in Brooklyn, Connecticut to an old New England family. In 1823, as a young man, he entered the West Point military academy after which he served as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Seventh Infantry. His interest in Chemistry and mineralogy soon called him back to West Point where he acted as an Assistant Professor of Geology. After resigning from the Army in 1834 with a rank of 1st Lieutenant, Mather accepted a position as Professor of Chemistry at the University of Louisiana. Later he was employed as Professor of Natural History and Sciences at the University of Ohio, was appointed Geologist of the First Geological District of New York for Governor William H. Seward, and was the State Geologist of both Ohio and Kentucky. In 1847 Mather became president of the University of Ohio. During his long career Mather made copious notes regarding his geological explorations, published profusely, and had a lively and extensive correspondence - much of which remains accessible to this day. Mather reports on one humorous incident in Long Island where, while collecting rock specimens, he had a run-in with a local farmer. The famer, observing the care with which Mather collected and cataloged his rock specimens, assumed that Mather had, in fact, discovered gold! Mather died in Columbus, Ohio on February 26, 1859. Today the W.W. Mather Medal is an important Geologic Reserach commendation. (Collections of the Minnesota Historical Society, p. 133.) Click here for a list of rare maps from British Admiralty.
Cartographer: John Calvin Smith was a New York based surveyor and cartographer active in the mid 19th century. Smith's imprint is associated with Colton, Stiles, and Disturnell among other prominent map American publishers of the period. Nonetheless, despite his relative importance little is known of his life. We do know that Smith was one of the charter members of the American Geographical and Statistical Society. The Society, founded in 1851 in New York, brought together some of the most prominent 19th century American cartographers. Smith's most important work is most likely his 1843 Map of the United States of America, Canada and Texas… John Calvin Smith was succeeded by his son of the same name who continued his father's as a surveyor and geographer. Click here for a list of rare maps from John Calvin Smith.
Cartographer: William and Francis Endicott were mid 19th century engravers and lithographers based at 59 Beekman Street, New York City. Peters, in his important work on American lithography America on Stone writes "it is hard to summarize the Endicotts. They did everything and did it well . . . [they] worked with and for Currier & Ives, yet in spite of all that much of their work lacks real individuality." The Endicott firm was responsible for many 19th century views and plans of New York City and state as well as plans of Sacramento, California, and the Midwest. Click here for a list of rare maps from William and Francis Endicott.
Size: Printed area measures 23 in height x 52 inches in width (58.42 x 132.08 centimeters)
Condition: Very good condition. Photo does not do this map justice. Tone is clean and even. Flattened and backed with archival tissue.
Code: LongIsland-mather-1842 (to order by phone call: 646-320-8650)
© Geographicus Rare Antique Maps, Kevin Brown, 11/3/2014