Philadelphia: Anthony Finley, [ 1826]. Fifteen numbered, hand-colored folding maps printed on fourteen onionskin sheets (Florida and West Indies maps printed on same sheet) and tipped to stubs, plus Index leaf mounted on front pastedown and Population leaf mounted on rear pastedown. Original red morocco wallet-style binding, flap stamped in gilt, "Finley's American Atlas Sold by John Grigg" and his address. Binding rubbed and edgeworn, spine and flap ends neatly repaired. Several maps with neat, expert repairs along the folds, mending closed tears, a few short unrepaired splits at cross-folds. Minor foxing, some staining on the New York map. Very good. In a cloth chemise and half morocco and cloth clamshell case, spine gilt. Item #WRCAM55066
The rare pocket issue of Finley's seminal atlas, without title-page, as issued, with maps dated 1825-26. The regularly-issued folio edition is also rare, but the pocket issue has evidently survived in a relatively small number of copies, and is not often found in such nice condition.
Finley published his atlases in the 1820s in direct competition with Henry Tanner, with the maps arranged much the same way and with the same level of skill as Tanner. This atlas was issued by Finley the same year as his own NEW AMERICAN ATLAS, and they are very similar in makeup, the differences being that the pocket issue has two maps combined on one sheet in the case of Florida and the West Indies; the maps are printed on onionskin paper for easier folding; and, of course, that the maps are folded into the wallet- sized format. The maps included here are enumerated on the Index leaf, as follows: North America; the United States; Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont; Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island; New York; Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware; Virginia and Maryland; North and South Carolina and Georgia; Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama; Kentucky and Tennessee; Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and the Michigan Territory; Missouri and the Arkansas Territory; Florida, elevations of mountains, and the West Indies (two maps on one sheet); and South America.
The United States map is engraved with a note reading: "The publisher is indebted to the politeness of Major S. H. Long for the use of his documents in the construction of that portion of this Map west of the Mississippi river." It also includes a diagram of the "Comparative Elevation of the Principal Mountains Cities &c. in North & South America," marking active volcanoes.
"Finley's 1826 A NEW AMERICAN ATLAS, DESIGNED PRINCIPALLY TO ILLUSTRATE THE GEOGRAPHY OF THE UNITED STATES OF NORTH AMERICA appears to have been a one-time effort. Most of the atlas maps carry the credit 'Drawn by D. H. Vance,' and all were engraved by J. H. Young. The same plates, with dates and publisher's name changed, were used by S. Augustus Mitchell in 1831 for an atlas published under the same title as Finley's 1826 volume" - Ristow.
A very rare and early surviving pocket atlas from one of the most esteemed American mapmakers of the 19th century. RUMSEY 280 (maps dated 1827). DECKER 38:141 (pocket issue). PHILLIPS ATLASES 1378 (ref). HOWES F140 (ref). NMM 485 (ref). SABIN 52438 (ref). RISTOW, p.270. TOOLEY, p.211.