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1939 Wallingford Map of the United States as seen by a New Yorker

A New Yorker's Idea of The United States of America - Main View

1939 Wallingford Map of the United States as seen by a New Yorker


Iconic and hilarious pictorial map of the United States as imaged by a New Yorker in the 1930s.



A New Yorker's Idea of The United States of America
  1939 (undated)     12 x 16 in (30.48 x 40.64 cm)


This is scarce and whimsical 1939 map depicting a New Yorker's idea of the United States by Daniel K. Wallingford. The map depicts a distorted view of the United States, where New York State, Manhattan and Brooklyn are shown in oversize proportion to the rest of the country.

The map is a charming combination of humor and satire, depicting the provincialism of a New Yorker, to whom the rest of the country is unimportant. Names of places are either inaccurate or random, showing a New Yorkers lack of knowledge or interest. For example, southern United States is humorously depicted, with a massive Florida, and four rivers, each named 'Swanee River'. Hollywood and San Francisco take up two-thirds of California and are shown as separate states. Minneapolis and Indianapolis are shown as 'twin cities' in Michigan, with Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul, Dubuque and Nebraska as cities in Illinois. Nevada is a city in Reno, and New Mexico is a city in Texas. The Great Salt Lake replaces Lake Superior, while Lake Michigan takes the name of Lake Superior. Lake Champlain is bigger than Lake Michigan, while Lake Erie is depicted as tiny lake in northern New York.

The map also includes beautiful illustration of ships, whales, islands etc. The lower right quadrant of the map includes four views of New York, including the Empire State building and the Fifth Avenue Coach. Another charming illustration along the lower border depicts a view of the desert and wagons on the left and a city and cars on the right. The upper left quadrant includes amusing text.

First published in 1936 by the Columbia University Press, and later in 1937 for the Times Book Fair, this particular map, larger than the previous two versions and redone in color, was issued in 1939 and notes the New York World's Fair on 1939. Copyrighted by Daniel K. Wallingford, 452 West 144th Street, New York, N.Y.


Daniel K. Wallingford (fl. c. 1932 – January 11, 1964) was an American industrial designer and artist. Wallingford attended Cornell University where studied Architecture and Industrial Design and was a member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity. He served as a captain in World War I and as Lieutenant Colonel of Artillery in World War II. He is known for two important maps, New Yorker's View of the United States of America and The Bostonian's View of the United States of America. Both maps were revolutionary in the evolution of the American pictorial map for their satirical depiction of New York and Boston, respectively. The New Yorker's View, Wallingford's first map, was initially issued in 1932 in just 100 prints, which Wallingford distributed as Christmas gifts. The map proved so popular he ordered a second printing began to distribute it via mail order. Later, in March of 1976, a modified version appeared as a New Yorker cover. Shortly after moving to Boston in 1936, he issued his second map, the The Bostonian's View, also sold via mail order. A third less famous map, A Bookman's Idea of the United States was later published. Wallingford was most likely inspired by John T. McCutcheon's 1922 New Yorker's View of the World and intern inspired a number of subsequent artists including John Roman (Cowboy America) and Ernest Dudley Chase (The United States as Viewed by California). Despite the near iconic popularity of his two famous maps, little is known of Wallingford's personal life. Wallingford died in 1964 and was survived by his wife, Margaret. Learn More...


Very good. Mounted on canvas, poster style. As with many examples of this map, the recto has been varnished producing an even toning.


OCLC 839295114. Persuasive maps: PJ Mode Collection, Cornell University, PJM_1254_01.