This is an 1866 map of Central Park shortly after its completion when it was considered an innovative wonder of urban civic design. The map depicts the park from 58th Street to 111th Street and from Columbus Avenue to Madison Avenue. Highly detailed, numerous locations throughout the park are labeled, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Art Museum), the Pond, the Lake, and the Croton Reservoir, along with numerous other hills, arbors, rocks, etc. Twenty-seven locations are numerically identified, with the index situated along the bottom border. Each gate entering the park is also labeled, including the Children's Gate by the Menagerie (now called the Central Park Zoo), the Artists' Gateand the Womans' Gate. Two locations outside the park, Columbus Circle (labeled as simply The Circle) and the American Museum of Natural History (Natural History), are also labeled.
Historian Gloria Deak describes the design of Central Park,
There was a staggering amount of work to be done to transform the area into a blend of pastoral and woodland scenery. This involved the design and construction of roadways, tunnels, bridges, arches, stairways, fountains, benches, lamp posts, gates, fences and innumerable other artifacts. It also involved the supervision of an army of about five thousand laborers…Olmsted, to whom most of the credit goes, insisted on seeing the multidimensional project as a single work of art, which he was mandated to create. For this purpose, he ventured to assume to himself the title of ‘artist.'
Today, because of Vaux and Olmstead's efforts, New York Yorkers, ourselves included, have the privilege of enjoying what is, perhaps, the finest example of a planned urban public recreation area in the world.
This map is unattributed and we are uncertain in where it may have been published.
Very good. Backed on archival tissue for stability. Light wear along original fold lines. Blank on verso.