• Notice of Updates and Revisions

    I have completed revisions to my previous post on the Holland engraved maps, shifting a few things about and making significant additions to the content. Thanks for your patience! Sometimes enthusiasm to post something new leaps over the final steps in preparation and these revisions become necessary. 🙁

  • The Engraved Holland Maps and their Evolution

    The maps I am about to show you here are the result of Samuel Holland’s great survey of Saint John’s Island which I discussed in my previous blog. But first I want to remind you that Holland’s achievement happened in spite of the fact that he was using old methods to determine longitude which were in the process of being replaced by the dependable new marine chronometer that could be used on land and sea for quick and very accurate results. The ultimate issue in surveying and navigating in historical times up to the late Eighteenth Century was determining the longitude of whatever place in which you found yourself. For…

  • MAPS OF THE COLONY OF SAINT JOHN’S ISLAND – Part 3: The British Colonial Period and Samuel Holland’s Survey.

    The End of the Seven Years War In North America, the climax of the Seven Years War was the capture of Quebec City in September of 1759. With daring and success, the English, under General James Wolfe, fought well after a secret attack based on climbing difficult cliffs to a large pasture area called the Plains of Abraham today where they faced the disoriented French troops. The story is well known, and many books are available that tell it clearly and well. General Wolfe was shot and died in the field, comforted only by a soldier. General Montcalm, the commander of the French forces, was also wounded and died the…

  • reserved space

    This space is reserved for the time being as I decide whether to break up the previous long post into two parts, having obtained a number of new scans of rare manuscript maps.

  • MAPS OF THE COLONY OF ILE SAINT JEAN: Part 2 – 1745-1763 and beyond…

    The previous post ended with a brief account of the conquest of Louisbourg and Port la Joye by the British North Americans in 1745. We will return to that sad story shortly but first I want to introduce you to a great French cartographer, Nicholas Bellin, who produced this beautiful and most elegant map of the eastern parts of New France that follows.   Jacques Nicolas Bellin (1703 – 21 March 1772) was a geographer and hydrographer. He was prodigiously clever and talented and at the age of 18 was appointed chief cartographer to the French Navy. He soon became part of a unique intellectual group called Les Philosophes, not…