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Edward Stanford

Stanford's Map of the Seat of War in America

Edward Stanford


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First edition of this map of the eastern United States, annotated as the tide of the Civil War turned against the Confederacy.

  • Edward Stanford (English).
  • London: Edward Stanford, [1861].
  • Original hand-colored linen-backed map dissected into 48 sections.
  • Ads for other Stanford publications to front and rear.
  • 19 locations underlined in contemporary red, blue, and black. Many roads and railways highlighted in contemporary red.
  • Initials “M. S.” to label.
  • Housed in original slipcase with typographic label.

The annotations on this map indicate that it was sold during a turning point in the Civil War: 19 battle locations are underlined, the latest of which is Chicamaunga, fought in September 1863. By this time, the Confederacy had suffered several high-profile losses, including Gettysburg and Vicksburg (both also underlined), and the fall of Atlanta would come a year later. 

The owner of the map, “M. S.,” was clearly an interested observer of the conflict with a desire to stay up-to-date. They were also willing to pay 15 shillings for the most expensive folded version.

The underlines are done in red, blue, and black, with no discernible scheme. “Big name” battles are highlighted, as well as smaller conflicts such as the Battle of the Hemp Bales in Lexington, Missouri. Historian Richard Stephenson describes “the broad interest” of British popular cartographers in the Civil War, identifying Edward Stanford as a “major contemporary map publisher.” Annotations of Confederate-won battles slightly outnumber those won by the Union, possibly reflecting England’s economic interest in the South’s success in the conflict. 

The Library of Congress copy cited in Stephenson’s catalogue notes a similar campaign of underlining the locations of battles and tracing roads and railroads; this indicates that it may have been added by the publisher. The quality of the underlining in the present copy is higher than that of the Library of Congress copy. It captures the progress of a critical moment in the war, when the outcome of the Civil War was still uncertain.


Richard W. Stephenson, Civil War Maps: An Annotated List of Maps and Atlases in the Library of Congress, item 17.55.

Condition Report

Star iconVery Good
Like New

Slipcase with some edgewear and scuffing, a couple spots of soil.

Careful repair of tear to rear.

Ads to front and rear lightly soiled.

A few small spots of soil to map.

Colors vibrant.


Height: 8.75 inches / 22.23 cm
Width: 5.75 inches / 14.61 cm

Unfolded Map Width: 52.00 inches/ 132.08 cm

Unfolded Map Height: 44.50 inches/ 113.03 cm


First Edition




Military, Americana, Maps, Illustrated, Ephemera

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