Seth Kaller, Inc.

Inspired by History

Other Revolution and Founding Fathers (1765 - 1784) Offerings


Other Maps Offerings


Other Books Offerings


General Map of the Middle British Colonies in America, Printed by Benjamin Franklin
Click to enlarge:
Select an image:

This hand-colored General Map of the Middle British Colonies in America, and the accompanying Analysis, is a first edition, first state printing of one of the most important maps of Colonial America. Particularly due to the details of the Ohio Country, it played a key role in the French and Indian War, with General Edward Braddock using a copy in his ill-fated expedition against the French in modern-day western Pennsylvania.

LEWIS EVANS. Geographical, Historical, Political, Philosophical and Mechanical Essays. The First, Containing an Analysis of a General Map of the Middle British Colonies in America; And of the Country of the Confederate Indians: A Description of the Face of the Country; … Philadelphia: Benjamin Franklin and David Hall, and sold by Robert and James Dodsley in London, August 1755. First edition. First state (before “The Lakes Cataraqui” caption was added just north of Lake Ontario), original hand-coloring, unfolded to 27 x 20⅛ in. Removed for conservation and display. The accompanying book is included, 7½ x 10¼ in. 36 pp.

Inventory #27200.99       Price: $275,000

Historic Background

Evans built on his Map of Pennsylvania, New-Jersey, New-York, and the three Delaware Counties revised in 1752, as well as the best information from other sources to create this 1755 map. Using the Map of the most inhabited part of Virginia by Joshua Fry and Peter Jefferson, he adjusted the longitudinal position of the Potomac River and added the area claimed by the Ohio Company to Pennsylvania. He also consulted the Map of the Northern Neck of Virginia by William Mayo and the Mapp of the Bay of Chesepeack, with the Rivers, Potomack, Potapasco, North East, and part of Chester by Walter Hoxton, as well as maps of Connecticut by William Douglass and Thomas Pownall. 


Evans dedicated the new work to Thomas Pownall, as a “Tribute of Gratitude, for the great Assistance You have given me in this Map; and to assure the Public, that it has past the Examination of a Gentleman, whom I esteem the best Judge of it in America.” Pownall, the recently appointed lieutenant governor of New Jersey and a future governor of Massachusetts Bay, received most of the public acclaim at the time of its publication. (Schutz, Thomas Pownall…, 53.) 


Benjamin Franklin, who took immense pride in his trade as a printer throughout his long and storied life, had both a personal and professional connection with cartographer Lewis Evans. Franklin employed Evans as a clerk, and sometimes draftsman, in the 1740s, and Deborah, Franklin’s wife, served as godmother to Evans’ daughter Amelia. After Lewis Evans’ untimely death in 1756, Franklin helped Amelia secure royalties on later editions of her father’s map. He remained in close correspondence with her up until his death. 

Add to Cart Ask About This Item Add to Favorites