American Antiquarian Society, 1836.
Map. Lithograph with original hand coloring. Image measures 15" x 16.25". Page measures 16.75" x 17".
This beautiful map shows the locations of Native American tribes throughout the United States in Canada. Areas are color-coded by tribe and include Eskimo, Athapascas, Algonquin-Lenape, Iroquois, Cherokees, Creek, Choctaw, Sioux, Black Feet, and Pawnee. However, this harmonious appearance obscures a much more troubled history. Distinguishing between 1600 in the east and 1800 in the west, the map speaks to the devastation wrought by the Indian Removal Act of 1830. With unfortunate irony, the use of red to indicate the Seminole Indian Nation points to the violent Seminole War taking place at this moment. Published by the American Antiquarian Society to accompany an article by Albert Gallatin, the map was likely seen at the time as a document of historical change and westward expansion of the kind prompted by Jedidiah Smith's 1820s explorations, which appear on this map for the first time. While it prompts a celebration of Smith's discoveries, it is also a subtle reminder of the impacts of American settlement.The map is in very good condition. Some wear along original folds. Slight tear at center right. Albert Gallatin (1761-1849) was a Swiss-American politician and ethnologist who served in the House of Representatives and as Secretary of the Treasury. Later in life, he founded the American Ethnological Society based on his lifelong studies of Native American culture. He also participated in the founding of New York University.
Illustrator: Gallatin, Albert