London: Robert Sayer, 1762.
Map. Hand-colored. 8" x 12 1/4".
This uncommon map of the city of Veracruz situates the port at the north end of the coastline as it extends down to Anton Lizardo. Both the city and its protective fort, San Juan de Ulua, are colored in red, highlighting the port's significance as a center of Spanish trade. Although titled as a map of Veracruz and the road leading to it, it can also be seen as an early map of what is now the Veracruz Coral Reef System, which covers almost the entire area of ocean here depicted. These reefs are shown with small Xs surrounded by stippling, which along with soundings provide useful information to sailors looking to navigate these hazards. One of the earliest obtainable English-language maps of the region, this map is also a fascinating document of natural history and the changes wrought over centuries.The map appeared in Jefferys and Sayer's "General Topography of North American and the West Indies." It has some chips to margins and overall scuffing. Hard to find.Thomas Jefferys (1710-1771) was one of the most important and prolific mapmakers of his era with particular focus on North America. Robert Sayer (1725-1794) was an important English publisher of maps, portraits, and nautical engravings. Partnering with John Bennett around the 1760s, the two published the works of well-known cartographers such as Kitchen, Jefferys, Belling, d'Anville and others. This beautiful, large-scale map is an impressive example of his work.