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This is an unusual and ephemeral 1794 first edition map of the United States by Robert Wilkinson. Wilkinson's map covers the United States from the Mississippi River to the Atlantic seaboard and from the Great Lakes and Canada to Florida, which at the time was a Spanish possession. Beautiful original color work defines political regions.
Of particular interest is Wilkinson's treatment of the western parts of the United States, including a vast Western Territory extending from western Georgia, around Tennessee, northwards as far as the Great Lakes, and eastward as far as Pennsylvania and Virginia. At the time this only tentatively explored region was dominated by various powerful and populous American Indian nations including the Choctaws, Muskogee, Chickasaw, Illinois, Miami, Cherokee, and others. Soon these lands would be organized by the Federal government into territories and eventually new states, a process which would eventually lead to the early 19th century displacement of the various indigenous peoples known as the Trail of Tears.
Maine, far to the north, is identified as 'Belonging to the Massachusetts Bay.' Following the Revolutionary War Maine was treated as an enclave of Massachusetts. During the War of 1812 Massachusetts failed to protect Maine from British attempts to establish a colony there called New Ireland. Though the British were ultimately driven out, the failure of the Massachusetts militia led to general bitterness towards Massachusetts and calls for Maine's statehood – which were answered in 1820.
This colorful map was published in 1794 by R. Wilkinson of no. 58 Cornhill, London for issued in the first edition of Wilkinson's General Atlas.
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