SCHRÄMBL, Franz Anton (1751-1803)
Generalkarte von Nordamerika sant den Westindischen Inseln
Vienna: 1788. Copper-engraved map, with original outline colour, on four unjoined sheets, with full natural margins, in excellent condition. Sheet size of each 24 1/3 x 33 inches.
A finely engraved monumental map of North America depicted shortly after the American Revolution, by a great Austrian cartographer.
This is one of the largest depictions of North America made during the eighteenth-century. Schrämbl, who was by then one of Austria's most prominent cartographers, directly based this work on the map by Thomas Pownall. Pownall, a British MP, and formerly the governor of New Hampshire and Massachusetts, first produced this map in 1777. Schrämbl based his work on Pownall's 1783 second state, which showcases the former thirteen colonies as the newly independent United States of America. It was included as one of the principal maps of his grand work, the Allgemeiner Grosser Atlas. The immense scope of Schrämbl map's takes in all of the territory from James Bay, all the way down into the Spanish Main of South America. The map shows the newly independent American republic to be a small nation hugging the Atlantic seaboard, while the vast lands of the Ohio and Mississippi basins are shown to be largely uninhabited. The map covers all regions in great geographic detail. One of the most attractive features of the map is its pictorial representation of Native American villages, trading posts, mines and other features. Mexico, Central America, and the broad chain of the West Indian archipelago are also elegantly portrayed. The map features two fascinating cartographic insets; the first of which depicts Hudson's Bay and the Canadian Arctic; the latter supposedly containing the entrance to the purported Northwest Passage. The second inset features the head of the Sea of Cortes in the southwest, evincing Father Eusabio Kino's declaration that California is not an island, based on his exploration of the area from 1698 to 1701. This elegant compostion is further embellished by a large cartouche of rocaille ornamentation.
Cf. Kohlmaier, Ursula, Der Verlag Franz Anton Schrämbl (Doctoral Dissertation, University of Vienna, 2001); McCorckle, New England in Early Printed Maps, 788.6.