Dorothy Sloan -- Books

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October 26, 2007

Guide Map to Niagara Falls for “Hasty Travellers”

96. [MAP]. HALL, & MOONEY (lithographers). [At top above map] Map of Niagara Falls and Guide Table. Being a Complete Directory and Guide to the Falls and Vicinity, for Remark on the Spot or for Reference at Home, Directions to Hasty Travellers.... [title on map above lower neat line] Map of Niagara Falls, and Adjoining Shores. Lith. of Hall & Mooney. Buffalo. [Buffalo, ca. 1840]. Lithograph map with surrounding text and key, 2 insets: (1) A Bird’s eye view of Niagara Strait; (2) The Whirlpool. Overall sheet size: 40 x 30 cm. Pocket map, folded into original cloth covers, green printed paper label. Slight darkening on one edge and at folds, a few splits at folds with minor losses, covers and label fine. OCLC locates a similar, smaller map of a decade earlier, but no copy of this map.

            The map delineates the Village of Niagara Falls, the proposed City of Falls, Niagara Falls, Iris Island, and portions of Niagara River. It documents various features and events of the area that occurred in the late 1830s, thereby leading one to believe this is an early imprint of this firm. For example, there is a reference to the Episcopal church which burned down September 1839 and a reference to Joel Robinson’s rescue of Chapin in 1838. Significantly there is no reference to his rescue of Allen three years later. On the Canadian side the proposed City of the Falls is still shown in embryo; it would not be built until 1851. An early overall view of what was at the time a basically unspoiled area fit for permanent residence and, as the map states, “Hasty Travellers.” Peters, America on Stone, p. 203 (documents the firm of John P. Hall and Lawrence Mooney in Buffalo 1839-1852 and notes they created views of Niagara Falls). ($750-1,500)

Auction 21 Abstracts

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