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Very Rare Map of Yellowstone Region, Only Recently Recorded by Blevins

Large, Strikingly Colored Geological Map

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575. [YELLOWSTONE]. [HAYDEN GEOLOGICAL MAP]. UNITED STATES. WAR DEPARTMENT. [Insignia showing a castle surrounded by wreaths in a shield, surmounted by an eagle with a snake in its beak, with the word “Essayons” in a ribbon below] Map of the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers and Their Tributaries. Explored by Capt. W.F. Raynolds Topl. Engrs. and 1st. Lieut. H.E. Maynadier 10th. Infy. Assistant. 1859-60. Prepared to accompany Geological Report of F.V. Hayden, M.D. Geologist to the Expedition. [scale] Engraved in the Engineer Bureau War Dept. [untitled key to geological strata, in two columns, with eight colors keyed to White River Tertiary, Lignite Tertiary, Cretaceous, Jurassic, Red Beds, Carboniferous, Potsdam Sandstone, and Granite Metamorphic and Basaltic]. N.p., n.d. [ca. 1867-1868]. Lithograph geological map with original full, vivid hand coloring in yellow, beige, green, grey, lilac, blue, brown, and tan; paper mounted on old cartographical linen, folded to panel size of 22 x 12.2 cm. Neat line to neat line: 69 x 105.7 cm; overall sheet size: 76 x 112 cm. Creased where formerly folded, occasional minor air pockets between linen and paper due to non-uniform application of paste between the two surfaces, a few inconsequential losses at folds, four old, small, and light tape repairs on recto (not distracting), overall very good to fine, excellent color.

     This appears to be the first state of Hayden’s geological map of the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers, recorded only recently by Bruce H. Blevins, pp. 79-80 & 328; Map 128 (Mapping Wyoming, Mansfield Centre, Connecticut: Martino Publishing, 2007). No copies located in standard sources or in sales records. None located in the National Archives, Library of Congress, or Smithsonian. Item 576 following is the 1869 published version of Hayden’s geological map, next in this cartographic sequence (see Blevins 129 and next entry for more details and cartobibliographical citations). Comparing the present map with 1869, we note the following: The geology is identically marked and colored in comparison with Hayden’s 1869 map, with only slight differences in color quality discernable between the two (probably indicative of natural differences due to coloring by hand). The present 1867 map evidently was printed internally by the Bureau of Engineers, not by Bien, whose imprint is on the 1869 version following (Item 576), nor is there any reference on the present map to Hartman Bache or Bureau of Topographical Engineers, which are present on Hayden’s 1869 map. Further, in the present 1867-1868 map, the final category of geological strata is “Granite Metamorphic and Basaltic”; whereas in the 1869 version that stratum is “Granite, Metamorphic, & Basaltic.” In the present version, located below the two columns of geological strata is “Long Lake Cr.” which is omitted in the 1869 map with the longer one column format for the geological strata. The older style Topographical Engineers emblem (at head of title block) is identical to those seen on Raynolds’ topographical maps (see, for example, Item 574 above). These differences and the fact that Hayden would need early working copies of the Raynolds topographical map for drawing his geology suggest that the present map is a pre-publication issue, perhaps unique or one of only a small number of remainders made for internal use, for Hayden’s original report submitted to Raynolds on March 1, 1867, to accompany his final report to Congress (July 1, 1867). For examples of maps printed only for the use of the Corps, see notes to Item 574 above.

     Background information by Blevins, Mapping Wyoming, p. 79:

Dr. F.V. Hayden, who accompanied Captain Raynolds on the Yellowstone and Missouri expedition of 1859-1860, prepared a Geology Map of Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers and their Tributaries. Two versions of this map exist. As it was based on Reynolds’ map (Map 106 [see Item 574 preceding]), the version one map (Map 128 [present map]) was also probably completed late in 1867. The version one map was prepared to accompany Appendix 12 of the Reynolds 1868 Report to Congress. Very few copies of the map would have been produced in the initial report to the Executive Branch and Congress. Congress authorized the reprinting of the basic report by Raynolds with his map but did not authorize the reprinting of the appendices which included the 1867/1868 geology map. In 1869 a separate geology report was issued by the military with the original 1867/1868 version one of the Hayden geology map slightly modified, as the version two map (Map 129 [Item 576]). This version two map has a variation in the title block and legend from the 1867/1868 version one of the geology map of the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers. The version two map is illustrated in color in Mapping the West.

Unfortunately, according to Raynolds’ 1868 Report on the Exploration of the Yellowstone River, Hayden’s Appendix 12, his report on geology, was “Not Printed” (see pp. 2-3 in the report, where this is documented).

     The present map represents the transformation of Raynolds’ original topographical map (see Item 574 preceding) into Hayden’s own geological map by the addition of the key to geological strata and the accompanying extensive and quite vivid hand coloring indicating those features. This is the first geological map of the Far West regions based on actual ground observations. Hayden’s geology of unexplored areas, such as what is now Yellowstone National Park, was extrapolated entirely from his knowledge of the geology of similar landforms and features encountered along the route. All of the geology at Yellowstone and westward of their route is imaginary. It is a large and beautiful map, a wonderful mixture of real and imagined topography and geology. Previous maps attempting to show the geology of the U.S. West by Rogers, Marcou, and others were geologically colored without anyone ever having mapped or tramped the ground. The present map comprises not only Hayden’s work with the Raynolds expedition but also represents the culmination of all of his efforts in the Great Plains and Rockies to that date. As noted in the previous entry setting forth the goals and results of Raynolds’ expedition, the area that encompasses Yellowstone National Park was left somewhat vague and no significant geological coloring, because the party could not penetrate that region. The first true geological maps of the Yellowstone National Park (by then designated as a park) came out in 1872 as part of the Hayden expeditions. These maps were based on actual exploration and mapped topography, each being published separately (not in a report), and are very rare.

     Goetzmann comments on the Warren and Raynolds expeditions in Army Exploration in the American West (p. 422): “They helped to complete the scientific picture of the West. Geographically speaking, their maps were important. Most significant of all was the effect of these expeditions on the fast-maturing science of geology. Here, thanks to the labors of F.V. Hayden and his collaborators, F.B. Meek and Joseph Leidy, an almost revolutionary advance was made in the study of western geology”; and (p. 424): “With each report Hayden was able to correct his map, until in his final Geological Report of the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers, published in 1869, he presented a completely colored geological map of the Dakota-Montana-Idaho region. In many respects this 1869 report was the most important geological work of the Topographical Engineer period, because it was a resume of all Hayden had found by the end of this phase of his western labors.”


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