AUCTION 23

 
 

Plans for the New Fort San Diego at the Port of Acapulco

 
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598. [MAP]. [COSTANSÓ, Miguel (attributed)]. “Plano del Terreno que ocupa el Castillo de Sn. Diego del Puerto de Acapulco y del Proyecto formado para maior seguridad y defensa de este importante Puesto.” N.p., n.d. [Acapulco, ca. 1778]. Manuscript map in sepia and black ink and watercolor, on two sheets of laid paper with original joining (backed with later burgundy cloth), showing the original outline of old Fort Diego in pink, which was destroyed by an earthquake April 1776, on which is overlaid a plan of the new proposed Fort Diego. 33.5 x 83 cm. Preserved in early marbled paper slipcase with contemporary paper label with ink title: "N. 2 Plan de Acapulco." Left sheet contains key and profile and contemporary notations reading top to bottom: "No. 2" [original to map]; 2. [later pasted label]; unidentified clipped signature [added later?]; and printed ex-libris of the Marquis de Pidal [1914]. Minor abrasion at lower right with later backing, including restoration of margin. A few minor closed tears. Very fine.

     This incredibly handsome plan is obviously an early one showing the concept of Spanish engineer Miguel Costansó (1741-1814), who was commissioned by the King to build a new Fort San Diego on the ruins of the one destroyed in an earthquake of 1776. The map shows the outline of the old fort upon which is superimposed a much larger and more modern structure. The fort, which still stands, was completed in 1783 at a cost of 600,000 pesos. Miguel Costansó, a native of Barcelona, officer of the Royal Corps of Engineers, and professional cartographer-draughtsman, was a chief contributor to the Portolá Expedition to California in 1769 establishing the first permanent settlements in Upper California. Although he is best remembered for his contributions to California history and cartography, he also led an active life as a military engineer, which the present map documents.

($7,500-15,000)

Sold. Hammer: $7,500.00; Price Realized: $9,187.50.

Auction 23 Abstracts

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