Richardson 1872 Texas Alamanac Map with inset of “The Great West”
355. [MAP]. RICHARDSON, W[illard]. Richardson’s New Map of the State of Texas Corrected for the Texas Almanac to 1872. [lower right] Entered according to Act of Congress in the year 18[??] by J.H. Colton & Co. in the Clerks Office of the District Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York [insets clockwise from upper left]  Plan of the Northern Part or Panhandle of Texas (9.3 x 17 cm)  Plan of Galveston Bay from the U.S. Coast Survey (8.3 x 7.3 cm)  Plan of Sabine Lake (7.3 x 5 cm)  Plan of Matagorda Bay (6 x 8.4 cm)  Plan of the Great West (14.8 x 23 cm). New York, 1871. Lithograph map on onion-skin paper, original full coloring, ornate vine border; neat line to neat line: 35.7 x 62 cm; border to border: 40.7 x 65 cm; south Texas extends beyond ornate border. Creased where formerly folded, scattered light foxing, a few splits at folds (no losses), overall very `good, with excellent color retention. Matted, framed, and under Plexiglas. All of the Texas almanac maps are very difficult to locate.
The first Richardson almanac appeared in the 1859 publication (Winkler 1052). The map was updated with each issue. This issue carries the map beyond Texas focus, with its large inset of the Transmississippi West at lower left (not in Wheat, Mapping the Transmississippi West). The map is not found in standard sources: Not in Day (who cites maps available with the Texas almanacs for the years 1860, 1867, and 1871). Not in Phillips. Taliaferro, Cartographic Sources in the Rosenberg Library 322A, 322B (cites photostats of the 1859 and 1860 almanac maps). References to Richardson’s Texas almanacs: Basic Texas Books 172R (this map not mentioned). Howes T138 (citing the Richardson series of almanacs, noting that some of the almanacs did not have maps, including 1872 almanac). Rader 3070 (citing the series). Winkler 3099 (noting that the new map cost 50 cents extra).
With a few exceptions, each year’s almanac included an updated version of the map. In this edition, the copyright date has been scrubbed, indicating that the lithographic stone was altered. This map shows a constantly expanding Texas, with numerous railroads, such as the proposed southern transcontinental railroad, and the eastern two-thirds of the state divided into counties. As is usual on these maps, roads, waterways, railroads, and towns are shown. Willard Richardson (1802-1875) came to Texas in 1837. After working as a teacher for nearly a decade, he became a newspaperman almost by chance, the career for which he is best known. His main achievements were the publication of his series of Texas almanacs and his guidance of the Galveston News from a small local paper to what shortly after his death became present-day Dallas Morning News. Handbook of Texas Online: Willard Richardson.
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