1868 Jeppe and Petermann Map of the Transvaal, South Africa

Original Map of the Transvaal or South-African Republic. - Main View

1868 Jeppe and Petermann Map of the Transvaal, South Africa


German interest in the Transvaal?


Original Map of the Transvaal or South-African Republic.
  1868 (dated)     18.75 x 23.25 in (47.625 x 59.055 cm)     1 : 1850000


This is an 1868 Frederick Jeppe and Augustus Petermann map of the Transvaal, South Africa. Composed in English but published by a German publishing house (likely to capitalize on a British audience), the map details the emerging Transvaal Republic and surrounding region. The Transvaal Republic is outlined in orange and the 'limit of the tsetse fly' is emphasized by light green. The treks of eight explorers active 1844 until 1867 are traced and highlighted. Cities, towns, and villages are labeled, including Pretoria and Potchefstroom. A large inset in the upper left situates the Transvaal Republic within the greater region and labels numerous surrounding polities, including the Oranje River Freestate. Smaller inset maps detail Rustenburg, Pretoria, and Potchefstroom.
The South African Republic or the Transvaal Republic
The South African Republic or Transvaal Republic existed from 1852 until 1902 and was an independent, internationally recognized state in what is now South Africa. The Republic was founded on January 17, 1852, after the British signed the Sand River Convention. This treaty recognized the independence of around 40,000 Boer people north of the Vaal River. The Republic fought several wars against the British, including the First (1880 - 1881) and Second Boer Wars (1899 - 1902). The Second Boer War ended the independence of both the South African Republic and the Oranje Free State, folding both into the British Empire.
Publication History and Census
The map was created by Frederick Jeppe, Alexander Merensky, and Augustus Petermann. It was drawn by Hermann Habenicht, engraved by Victor Geyer, printed by Carl Hellfarth, and published by Justus Perthes in 1868. Several different entries appear in OCLC and examples are part of the institutional collections at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, Yale University, the University of Cape Town, and The British Library.


August Heinrich Petermann (1822 - 1878) was a German cartographer. Petermann attended the 'Geographische Kuntschule' (Geographica School of Art), which was started by Heinrich Berghaus with the support of Alexander von Humboldt, in Potsdam beginning in 1839. Students at the school were obliged to work on many of the school's contracts, including maps for several different atlases. Following his time in Potsdam, Petermann relocated to Edinburgh and London from 1845 to 1854, where he gained insight into the commercial aspects of the cartography business. In 1854, Petermann returned to Gotha, Germany and began working with the Perthes brothers publishers. While working with the Perthes brothers, Petermann founded the journal Petermanns Geographische Mitteilungen, published from 1855 until 2014, long one of the most prominent German-language geography journals. More by this mapmaker...

Friedrich Heinrich Jeppe (July 25, 1834 - July 17, 1898) was a German publisher, spy, and mapmaker active in South Africa during the second half of the 19th century. Jeppe was born in Rostock, Germany and relocated to South Africa with his two brothers in 1861. Although initial merchants, F. H. Jeppe took a position as postmaster in Potchefstrom, and later, became Postmaster-General of the Transvaal Republic, a position he maintained until 1875 - when he lost his appointment to political maneuvering. Jeppe published numerous important large-format maps of the Transvaal and South Africa from about 1867 onwards. He also published the Transvaal Almanac and Directory from about 1877 onwards. Also in that year, 1877, he was commissioned as Government Translator and Controller of Statistics in the office of the Colonial Secretary. Eventually he obtained the position of Chief Draughtsman in the Department of the Surveyor-General. There is considerable evidence to suggest that Jeppe was a British agent that actively channelled cartographic information to British authorities until the time of his death. Jeppe became ill with liver disease early in 1898 and died in Pretoria on July 17 of 1898 (interred at the Old Cemetery, Pretoria.) On the eve of his death, he was still actively working on his most ambitious map, and his final missive to friend and government official Johann Rissik, requested assistance to his son, Carlos Friedrich Wilhelm (Charles) Jeppe (1870 - 1900), in publishing the completed map. The massive 6-sheet map was finally published in 1899 - just in time for the Second Boer War (1899 - 1902). Although published posthumously, Jeppe's 1899 Map of the Transvaal or S.A. Republic. The maps was used by both sides during the war and proved one of the finest and most important maps of South Africa ever published. Learn More...

Hermann Habenicht (March 3, 1844 - March 30, 1917) was a German cartographer. Born in Gotha to a porcelain painter and modeler, he attended the Gotha secondary school. His teachers at this school recommended him to the Justus Perthes cartographic institute (which was also in Gotha) as a drawing apprentice. Habenicht began his training at age fifteen, under the guidance of renowned cartographer Augustus Petermann. Soon after Habenicht's arrival, Petermann recognized and began encouraging his talent for terrain drawing. After Petermann's death in 1878, Habenicht took over many of the responsibilities for editing atlases published by Perthes, including the seventh edition of Stieler's Hand Atlas and many of the school atlases. He worked for the Perthes publishing company for fifty-five years. Learn More...

Carl Hellfarth (November 30, 1846 - July 12, 1918) was a German printer. Hellfarth was born in Gotha, Germany. He married Amalie Friederike Marie Möller (1850 - 1916) on June 16, 1873, and they had eight children. Learn More...

Johan Georg Justus Perthes (September 11, 1749 - May 2, 1816) was one of the most important German cartographic engravers of the 19th century. He was born in the Thuringian town of Rudolstadt, the son of a court physician. In 1778, he began working as a bookseller in Gotha. Perthes began his publishing empire shortly thereafter with the 1784 issue of the famed survey of European nobility known as the Almanac de Gotha. In the next year, 1785, he founded the cartographic firm of Justus Perthes Geographische Anstalt Gotha. His son Wilhelm Perthes (1793 - 1853) joined the firm in 1814. Wilhelm had prior publishing experience at the firm of Justus Perthes' nephew, Friedrich Christoph Perthes, who ran a publishing house in Hamburg. After Justus Perthes died in 1816, Wilhelm took charge and laid the groundwork for the firm to become a cartographic publishing titan. From 1817 to 1890. the Perthes firm issued thousands of maps and more than 20 different atlases. Along with the visionary editors Hermann Berghaus (1797 - 1884), Adolph Stieler (1775 - 1836), and Karl Spruner (1803 - 1892), the Perthes firm pioneered the Hand Atlas. When Wilhelm retired, management of the firm passed to his son, Bernhardt Wilhelm Perthes (1821 – 1857). Bernhardt brought on the cartographic geniuses August Heinrich Peterman (1822 - 1878) and Bruno Hassenstein (1839 - 1902). The firm was subsequently passed to a fourth generation in the form of Berhanrd Perthes (1858 – 1919), Bernhard Wilhelm's son. The firm continued in the family until 1953 when, being in East Germany, it was nationalized and run as a state-owned enterprise as VEB Hermann Haack Geographisch-Kartographische Anstalt Gotha. The Justus family, led by Joachim Justus Perthes and his son Wolf-Jürgen Perthes, relocated to Darmstadt where they founded the Justus Perthes Geographische Verlagsanstalt Darmstadt. Learn More...


Jeppe, F., 'Die Transvaal'sche oder Sud-afrikanische Republik', Petermann's Geographischen Mittheilungen (Gotha: Justus Perthes) 1868.    


Very good. Exhibits wear and toning along original fold lines. Verso repairs to fold separations.


OCLC 54620021.