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Map, Historical, United States, Colonial, Pictorial, Vintage Print, 1959


Karl Smith
A Map of the United States at the Close of the Revolutionary War
Linweave, Springfield, Massachusetts: 1959
Color process print
Signed in the matrix, lower right: Karl Smith
16 x 22.25 inches, image
18.75 x 25 inches, overall

Historical pictorial map of the contiguous United States (i.e. without Alaska and Hawaii) covering the colonial period from 1492 to 1783, the conclusion of the American Revolution. It was originally issued by the Linweave Paper Company as a promotional set of four maps covering different eras of U.S. history. The 13 original states and additional territories east of the Mississippi and north of the Florida Panhandle are colored green and outlined in black. They are enclosed in a heavy green outline, as are territories acquired from Great Britain by treaty at the conclusion of the war. The remainder of the current U.S. is colored yellow and enclosed in a heavy yellow outline. The map is labeled in black with the names of states and major cities, and in red with the names of major Native American tribes. There are small illustrations of pioneers, Native Americans, and wildlife throughout the map. Historic ships are depicted and labeled in the oceans. Brief captions note other sites and events related to the period. There is a mileage scale and compass rose lower right. The map is also colored in shades of blue, gray and bright red, and enclosed within a formal decorative border drawn to resemble a gilded picture frame.

Product description continues below.


Across the top of the map are a series of five small captioned illustrations showing “The Development of Our Flag.” At the lower left is a decorative cartouche with title flanked by images of Washington on horseback and a Revolutionary War solider,. The cartouche is surmounted by an eagle in profile and a stars and stripes shield and listed below it is a timeline of “Important Historical Data Not Shown on Map.” Mexico and Canada are colored gray and left blank, except for a few notations on the Canadian portion, and both of their national seals are illustrated in color.

There were four maps in the original set produced by Linweave. The other maps covered the periods 1784 to 1844, including the War of 1812 and the Westward Expansion; 1845 to 1866, including the run-up to the Civil War and its immediate aftermath; and 1867 to 1959, including the two World Wars, the Korean War, the adoption of Alaska and Hawaii as states, and “later developments in transportation.” The  offered map bears promotional text “Published by ‘Linweave’, producers of Quality Papers, with Envelopes to match,” and is imprinted lower right, just above a deckle edge, “This map is lithographed on Linweave Early American, White, 80 lb. basis.”

Karl Smith was a designer and illustrator of pictorial maps. His primary career was as an executive in the paper and graphic arts industries, but he drew maps as an avocation. Smith was also an active amateur historian who amassed a major collection on heraldry and genealogy and presented lectures on printing, paper, color, heraldry, and the life of Benjamin Franklin. In the 1930s and 1940s, the Speed Art Museum (then the J.B. Speed Art Museum) in Louisville, Kentucky, commissioned Karl Smith to make a series of pictorial maps of the states. In 1959 he created a series of four historical pictorial maps of the United States for Linweave Paper Company, showing the nation’s growth and development from the colonial era to the present. Over the course of his career he produced maps of North Carolina, Arkansas, Ohio, Mississippi, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Florida, the Stratford Plantation in Virginia, and historical maps of the lives of Abraham Lincoln and Robert E. Lee.

Full publication information: Copyrighted 1959 by Linweave, Springfield, Mass.

Condition: Generally very good, recently professionally cleaned and deacidified with only light remaining toning and wear. Deckle edge lower margin as issued.


“Growth and development of America in maps by Linweave.” Springfield, Massachusetts: Linweave Paper Company, 1959. Online at: David Rumsey Map Collection.–Growth-and-development-o?qvq=w4s:/who%2FSmith%2C%2BKarl;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=4&trs=30 (16 April 2019).

Hornsby, Stephen J. Picturing America, The Golden Age of Pictorial Maps. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2017. pp. 166-67.

“Images by Smith, Karl.” David Rumsey Map Collection.,+Karl (16 April 2019).

Additional information


20th Century