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Partie de la Coste de la Louisiane et de la Floride: Bellin 1744

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  • Title: Partie de la Coste de la Louisiane et de la Floride
  • Author: Jacques-Nicolas Bellin
  • Date: 1744
  • Medium: Copperplate engraving
  • Condition: Very Good
  • Inches: 17.75 x 8.5 [Image]
  • Centimeters: 45 x 21.5 [Image]
  • Product ID: 222014

This important early chart of the Gulf Coast depicts the area from New Orleans and the Mississippi delta in Louisiana to St. Marks River and Apalachicola Bay in Florida. The shoreline is still somewhat speculative but many harbors, inlets, bays and rivers are indicated along the coast. The Mississippi delta is well represented including the English Turn on the Mississippi River (Detour des Anglois). Shown mostly as a vast grassland, two areas noted as forests suitable for lumber are located near the abandoned French Fort de la Boulaye.

Numerous Native American tribes and villages are located and the Choctaw road to Natchez is partially shown in the upper left corner of the map. The map was drawn from manuscript sketches brought back to Paris by Pierre Francois Xavier de Charlevoix, a Jesuit priest who traveled through the region from 1720-1722. 

Charlevoix's account was extremely influential in future decisions made by Thomas Jefferson with regards to the Louisiana Purchase and the exploration of the west.