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Arkansas: Bradford 1838

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  • Title: Arkansas
  • Author: Thomas Bradford
  • Date: 1838
  • Medium: Hand-colored engraving
  • Condition: Good
  • Inches: 11 1/4" x 14 1/4" [Image]
  • Centimeters: 28.86 x 36.5 [Image]
  • Product ID: 002229

From An Illustrated Atlas, Geographical, Statistical, And Historical, Of The United States And The Adjacent Countries. By T.G. Bradford. Boston: Weeks, Jordan, And Company. New York: Wiley And Putnam. Engraved by G.W. Boynton.

This map of Arkansas comes from a first edition of the atlas that is known as Bradford's finest.

At one time, Arkansas Territory consisted of all or part of thirteen present Texas counties, and the Miller County courthouse was about fifty miles west of Texarkana. The uncertainty of the boundary led to near war with Spain when the Spanish army, claiming part of Arkansas in the Red River valley north of present-day Texarkana, stopped President Thomas Jefferson's southern exploration of the Louisiana Purchase, led by Thomas Freeman and Peter Custis. Jefferson's humiliation by Spain over the border dispute in Arkansas caused the government to downplay the Freeman-Custis expedition, leaving all of the glory of the exploration of Louisiana to the Lewis and Clark expedition.

Ultimately, the border was established by a survey completed five years after statehood, pursuant to an 1838 treaty with the Republic of Texas confirming prior treaties with Mexico and Spain. Today, the Texas border begins at the northwest corner of Louisiana and runs north to the south bank of the Red River, then west on the south bank of the river to the Oklahoma line.