“CARTE D'AMÉRIQUE...” Guillaume De l'Isle. Brussels, Eugene Henry Friex (Fricx), dated 1730 lower left. Fine engraved map with original hand-coloring (cartouches later color). Center fold archivally strengthened top and bottom, soft vertical crease between left margin and centerfold. (Image: 18 7/8 x 23 5/8'')
This famous historical map was first issued by De l’Isle’s in 1722. E. H. Friex , Printer to the King of Belgium, published this scarce issue in Brussels, 1730.
De l'’Isle’s maps “influenced delineation of the Mississippi Valley for many years” (Schwartz & Ehrenberg The Mapping of America, p. 143). It was “a towering landmark along the path of Western cartographic development...He correctly depicted the Great Lakes region, as well as the many English settlements along the East Coast.” (Martin & Martin, Maps of Texas and the Southwest, p.93).
The French territory of Louisiane takes up the majority of North America at the expense of the British colonies. This political bias is due to De l’Isle’s position as geographer to the King of France.
Quivira is located north of Nouveau Mexique (Quivera was described to Coronado as “rich in gold with lordly rulers”. It continued to appear on maps throughout the 18th century - spawning the imagination of the map-reader and explorer).
California is shown connected to the continent, but the area north of Cape Mendocino remains unknown. Colonies of the various European powers are indicated. “It was for doing this and contracting the western borders of the British colonies that De l’Isle’s maps became politically controversial”