CHART OF THE WESTERN COAST OF NORTH AMERICA, EXTENDING FROM THE GULF OF NICOYA TO SAN BLAS. COMPILED CHIEFLY FROM THE SPANISH SURVEYS, THE WHOLE MUCH IMPROVED BY THE OBSERVATIONS OF CAPTAIN BEECHEY R.N. AND COMMANDER BELCHER R.N. [caption title]
by Imray, James
London: James Imray, 1849. Engraved chart, 26 1/2 x 39 1/2 inches. Backed with linen. Two old vertical fold lines. A couple of very small chips around edges. Lightly tanned, with a few scattered foxmarks. Very good. A large "blue back" chart of the west coast of southern Mexico and Central America, extending from Cebaco Island in present-day Panama in the south to San Blas, Mexico, to the north. The map contains eight insets delineating important safe ports: Sihuatinijo (Zihuatinejo). Acapulco, Guatulco, San Carlos, Realejo, Salinas Bay, Culebra, and San Blas. It also shows views of several volcanic mountain formations from the sea at Colina, Guatemala, and Viejo, as well as views of Cape Corrientes, the Tetas de Coyuca, and the entrance to Acapulco. The map is the seventh in a series of eight that chart the Pacific coastlines of North and South America published by the London firm of James Imray in the mid-19th century. During this period, Imray was fast becoming the principal private supplier of sea charts to the merchant ships of Great Britain. His popularity was due in large part to the production of charts such as this one, which provided new and essential basic guides to areas of the Pacific beginning to be frequented more heavily by private British traders. "Salesmanship and prolific output alone would not ahve brought success unless the quality of the product had been right. In achieving this Imray had an advantage over earlier generations of commercial chart publishers, who faced a continual problem acquiring adequate hydragraphic information for their charts. By Imray's time accurate new survey material was fast becoming available for all parts of the world.... His contribution was to present the material in a convenient and familiar form for the merchant ship navigator. This had changed little over the years and Imray retained the well-tried format of a small-scale chart covering as much as possible of the sea passage for a particular trade, with numerous large-scale plans of ports" - Fisher. Rare, with OCLC recording only one copy, at the Huntington Library, and not in the British Library. FISHER, THE MAKERS OF THE BLUEBACK CHARTS, p. 39. OCLC 80151015. (Inventory #: WRCAM51881)
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