Maps & Atlases, Natural History & Color Plate Books: At Auction July 9, 2020

Lot 350: John James Audubon, Great Blue Heron, Plate CCXI, hand-colored aquatint and engraved plate from Birds of America, 1834. $40,000 to $60,000.


Cartography that spans the globe and the centuries: the important White/De Bry map of Virginia, a rare 1755 edition of the Fry & Jefferson map of Virginia, globes and armillary spheres, Japanese maps relating the events of Commodore Perry’s arrival, several Van Keulen charts including the Carolina coast and New England from Manhattan to Nantucket, and a large run of celestial charts by Andreas Cellarius.

Manuscript plats compiled by the Separatist Society of Zoar, Ohio were intended for the organization of a new communal village in 1882; a rare first edition, first state of Braddock Mead’s Map of the Most Inhabited Part of New England;  a “schoolgirl map” by a major figure in early nineteenth-century American women’s education, made as a young student herself; a raucous never-before-seen Art Deco map of Greenwich Village; California as a massive island in Nicolas Sanson’s Nouveau Mexique et la Floride; German editions of Captain John Smith’s maps of New England and Virginia; and Jacob Robyn’s Nieuw Aerdsch Pleyn—a decoratively appealing world map on a polar projection.   

Lot 77: Joshua Fry and Peter Jefferson, A Map of the Most Inhabited Part of Virginia, “Dalrymple edition,” 1755. $12,000 to $18,000.
Lot 56: Vincenzo Maria Coronelli and Jean Baptiste Nolin, Partie Occidentale du Canada ou de la Nouvelle France, Paris, 1688. $7,000 to $10,000.


Atlases include first editions of all the volumes of Henri Chatelain’s Atlas Historique; and eighteenth-century charts of American waters in The English Pilot, Fourth Book. A small Civil War atlas never before seen at auction, and another unusual item with no previous auction records: United States Coast Survey topographical engineer Joseph Enthoffer’s atlas of templates designed to teach topographical drawing to Army officers. Also included is a rare miniature Dutch composite atlas, a 1676 revision of the Mercator Hondius Atlas Minor expanded to include 24 more maps than the previous edition, spectacular seventeenth-century Japanese astronomy, an entirely manuscript 1835 French school geography, and Ortelius’s miniature world atlas in English

Lot 238: Henri Abraham Chatelain, Atlas Historique, seven volumes, Amsterdam, 1705-1720. $15,000 to $20,000.
Lot 252: Johann Baptist Homann, and Heirs, Atlas Mapparum Geographicarum Generalium & Specialium Centum Foliis, Nuremberg, circa 1750s. $12,000 to $15,000.

Plate Books & More

Audubon’s first octavo edition of the Birds of America, signed and inscribed to the Baltimore author and original subscriber of this work, Brantz Mayer; and a massive collection of mostly American bookplates and ownership labels from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Manuscript albums include a maritime ciphering book and a wonderfully illustrated English ship’s log of a voyage to South America and Hawaii from 1882 to 1884. There are exquisite Art Nouveau botanical plates, eighteenth-century Japanese food preparation, a rare first edition of Massachusetts music educator Lowell Mason’s oversize classroom lessons, and several nineteenth-century photography albums

Lot 318: Lowell Mason, Musical Exercises for Singing Schools, Boston, 1838. $1,500 to $2,500.
Lot 331: Alexander Wilson, American Ornithology, nine volumes, Philadelphia, 1808-14. $6,000 to $9,000.

Historical Prints & Drawings

A nice run of works by John James Audubon, including both Bien and Havell editions, is highlighted by his masterful Great Blue Heron and a pristine example of the Golden Winged Woodpecker. An unusual painting on cobweb fibers of a peasant couple for the Swiss tourist trade; a group of Native American plates including imposing portraits by Karl Bodmer; just a few Currier & Ives; and an effective watercolor of an owl by Scottish painter Archibald Thorburn

Lot 292: John James Audubon, The Birds of America, sign and inscribed, New York and Philadelphia, 1840-44. $18,000 to $22,000.

Previewing Online Only

This auction will be held live and conducted remotely by Swann auctioneers taking bids from multiple platforms. While there will not be bidding in the room, we will be accepting order bids, and interested buyers will be able to participate live online via the Swann Galleries App. The app is available in the App Store and on Google Play, and it can also be accessed on a desktop at

Please note: limited phone bidding will be available for this auction. Phone bidding registrations will close the day before the sale at 4pm.

At this time, our exhibition and auction location at 104 East 25th Street is closed to the public. In lieu of a physical exhibition, you may request condition reports from our specialists. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions.

*This auction has been rescheduled from its original date, and will now be held on Thursday, July 9, 2020 at 10:30 AM ET, previewing online only. The auction itself will be held live and will be conducted remotely by Swann auctioneers taking bids from multiple platforms. At this time, our exhibition and auction location at 104 East 25th Street is closed.

Specialist for the Auction

Caleb Kiffer, Maps & Atlases

(212) 254-4710 ext. 17

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