2008 Catalog, William R. Talbot Fine Art, Antique Maps & Prints Home

2008 Catalog > 7. Huntington, Map of Connecticut

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7. Eleazer Huntington. “Map of Connecticut from Actual Survey” (Hartford: E. Huntington, 1837). Copperplate-engraved pocket map with full bright original hand color. 18 1/8 x 21 3/4" at neat line. Sheet size: 19 ¼ x 23". With original 16mo leather covers with gilt title, slightly worn. Map removed and presented flat. Three insets along bottom: City plans of the joint capitals of New Haven and Hartford, and a small map of the “New England States.” At right of map, a “Profile of the Farmington Canal.” At left, a list of the governors of Connecticut from 1665 to 1835. A nice compass rose in center of Long Island Sound. Minor transference, some small losses at old intersection folds now stabilized. Overall, fine.

Price: SOLD [ Order ]

This outstanding early pocket map of Connecticut is a fine production by Eleazer Huntington, the scion of a well-known 19th-century family of engravers and publishers in Hartford. Beautifully hand colored by county, the map’s handsome style and level of detail exemplify the standards of map making for which the Huntington firm was known.

Click for image of leather cover

The map has many fascinating features to recommend it. Chief among them are the city plans of New Haven and Hartford, which from 1703 to 1875 were the joint capitals of Connecticut, and the profile of the Farmington Canal, the construction of which had just been completed in 1835. The building of the canal represented a significant event in the development of the state’s transportation system and the map is clearly spotlighting its debut.

The canal’s construction, begun in 1825, was inspired by the news that 260 miles of the Erie Canal had been completed in New York State. Prominent New Haven businessmen realized that they could have access to the state’s interior by building a canal running north from the tidewater at New Haven to the Massachusetts border and beyond. By the 1830s, the Farmington Canal was the state's "superhighway" for trade between New Haven and central Connecticut. Unfortunately, the entire project was a quixotic endeavor fraught with financial difficulties. The canal was not cheap to build, and the finances of its construction and upkeep were always precarious. Just 12 years after the canal was completed, a rail bed was laid to cover the same route the canal had traversed, and within two decades the canal was put out of business by the railroads. Parts of the canal, its towpath and boat basin, as well as stone supports for an aqueduct across the Farmington River, can still be seen in New Haven.

The map also displays great topographical features, as well as township surveys, common and turnpike roads, places of public worship, courthouses, towns, and canals.

An outstanding and rare document of early-19th-century Connecticut in good condition.

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