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1931 Held Fantasy Map of the Flyfisherman's Ideal Estate

Map of an Imaginary Estate for an Inveterate Fly-Fisherman.

1931 Held Fantasy Map of the Flyfisherman's Ideal Estate


The estate comes complete with a camp and a fly tying department.



Map of an Imaginary Estate for an Inveterate Fly-Fisherman.
  1925 (undated)    10.5 x 7.5 in (26.67 x 19.05 cm)


This is a 1931 John Held, Jr. map of an imaginary estate for a fly-fisherman. The map depicts the estate, which is almost exclusively rivers and pools, an ideal setting for any fly-fisherman. A fish hatchery is situated in the upper right corner, out of which five different rivers flow across the estate. Along both borders several signs are posted, stating that this is private property, to keep out and no trespassing. A rather large fly tying department is illustrated near the bottom of the estate, complete with parking for the fly tyers. A pair of wood ducks are included, as, per the map, they would be raised on the estate 'in order to secure certain feathers for certain kinds of flys'. Above the title cartouche, two fish are illustrated in the classical style, one representing comedy and the other tragedy. A thumbnail sketch of a 'happy fisherman' is illustrated to the left of the title cartouche. A scale is included in the lower left corner, which Held mocks, stating 'as though it meant anything.'

This map was 'conceived and engrossed by John Held Jr.' and published in 1931.


John Held, Jr. (January 10 1889 – March 2, 1958) was an American cartoonist, printmaker, illustrator, and author. Held was born in Salt Lake City and showed a talent for the arts at an early age. Having learned woodcutting and engraving from his father, he sold a drawing to the local newspaper at the tender age of nine years old. He sold his first cartoon to Life magazine at fifteen, and began working as a sports illustrator and cartoonist for the Salt Lake City Tribune in 1905. He married Myrtle Jennings, who happened to be the Tribune’s society editor, in 1910 and they both relocated to New York in 1912, where Held found a job as a graphic designer for an advertising company. In 1915 Vanity Fair began publishing his drawings, which he signed ‘Myrtle Held’. He worked for U.S. Naval Intelligence during World War I as an artist and cartographer. He is best known for his work during the 1920s, when he became one of the best-known illustrators of magazine covers. Covers of Life, Judge, The Smart Set began publishing his work, which quickly became popular. In addition to his signature flapper illustrations, Held also created linocuts and drew cartoons in 19th century woodcut style. From 1925 through 1932, these woodcut-style cartoons and faux maps were published frequently in The New Yorker. His work during the Great Depression is much less well-known. He lost most of his wealth in the Ivar Kreuger fraud scheme, and his final New Yorker illustration appeared in 1932. Held wrote and illustrated several novels, and published The Works of John Held, Jr. in 1931. In the 1950s, a popular nostalgia for the 1950s revived interest in Held’s work, and it appeared in Vanity Fair, Life, Harper’s Bazaar, and several other publications. Held died on March 2, 1958 of throat cancer.


Very good. Even overall toning. Cartoon on verso.


Rumsey 12169.000
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