France in Departments.
1845 (undated) 9 x 11 in (22.86 x 27.94 cm)
This is a fine example of the 1845 Chambers map of France. The map covers France divided into departments. An inset in the lower right quadrant details Corsica.
The French Department system was established on March 4th, 1790 by the National Constituent Assembly to replace the provinces with what the Assembly deemed a more rational political structure. The new department system was intended to deliberately break up France's historical regions in an attempt to erase cultural differences and build a more homogeneous nation. Initially there were 83 departments but by 1800 that number increased to roughly 130. Many of the departments that were created in 1790 remain the administrative districts to this day.
Divided and color coded according to regions and territories, the map identifies various cities, towns, islands, rivers, and an assortment of additional topographical details. This map was drawn and engraved by J. Gellatly.
William Chambers (April 16, 1800 - May 20, 1883) and Robert Chambers (July 10, 1802 - March 17, 1871) were born into a prosperous family on the border between Scotland and England. Unfortunately, by puberty their family fortunes had declined due to their father's bad loans to French prisoners of war. Left with little Robert Chambers, then 16, opened a small bookstand on Leith Walk, Edinburgh. His brother William, at 18, opened a bookstand of his own on the same street. A short time afterwards the two joined forces. Due to their thrifty business practices and hard work, the duo quickly developed a thriving business and began publishing. Their first publishing venture was 750 copies of "The Songs of Robert Burns", a sure bet in 19th century Edinburgh. They followed up with a series of educational works including several atlases, an encyclopedia, and more Burns books. The firm continued to publish into the early 20th century.
Very good. Moderate age toning. Blank on verso.