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Vintage maps in Oct. 5 auction capture fleeting visions of America

On Tuesday, October 5, starting at 8 pm Eastern time, Jasper52 will hold an 131-lot auction of Maps from a Seller’s Private Collection. While the consignor has declined to be named, he is comfortable revealing that he is a map dealer from Ohio, and is offering his private collection. All lots in the sale represent authentic, collectible maps that have been held under archival conditions to keep them from harm. There are no modern reprints of any kind – all are original engravings, lithographs or other type of image printed in the 19th century or earlier.

View the auction here.

Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.

Centuries-old maps unfurl different views of our world

Maps represent the ultimate marriage of art and science. Yes, they must be reasonably accurate – if they’re not, they’re useless – but given a choice between a map that is perfectly correct and one that’s correct but also has mermaids and monsters and fancy old ships swimming in its seas and an area marked “Here Be Dragons,” most people would take the second option.

Circa 1635 map of the Amazon region, showing the fictional Lake Parime, estimated at $400-$500

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Jasper52 map auction offers a world of choices

Maps are beautiful, decorative, and functional. Not only do they put the world in your hands, they let you fold or roll it up and carry it with you, wherever you might roam. It’s not surprising that collectors’ appetite for maps has been, and continues to be, absolutely insatiable. On May 4, starting at 8 pm Eastern time, Jasper52 will kick off its Premium Antiquarian Maps sale.

‘Asia According to the Sieur D’anville,’ 1772, estimated at $3,000-$4,000

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Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.

World of possibilities in Apr 27 antiquarian map sale

Buckaroo Banzai, lead character of the eponymous 1984 cult movie, said, “No matter where you go, there you are.” A good map lets you identify exactly where you are, but it’s perfectly OK to treat maps purely as works of art, or as a reminder of good times enjoyed in great places. On April 27, starting at 8 pm Eastern time, Jasper52 will stage a sale of 16th – 20th century antiquarian maps, selected by expert Steve Kovacs.

Large German map of the Middle East and India, estimated at $350-$400

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Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.

Mapmaking turned globular in 15th century

NEW YORK – “Globes have something mystical about them,” enthuses Vienna’s Globe Museum website, “… echoes of long-gone days when ‘here be dragons’ was a plausible entry on maps. Most of us spent at least some time as a child poking at a globe with a finger and discovering just how little geography we know.”

Globes are spherical orbs overlain with terrestrial (earthly) or celestial (heavenly) maps. Though their images are downscaled, they depict vast areas accurately, without distortion. All feature a set of lines: longitude and latitude, the equator, the path of the sun, circles of the Tropics, and the Antarctic and Arctic Circles.

Terrestrial globe, Willem Jansz Blaeu, Amsterdam, 1602. Height (in stand) 21in x 13in diameter. Realized $80,000 + buyer’s premium in 2015. Image courtesy of Arader Galleries
and LiveAuctioneers

Traditionally, globes are formed by positioning two half-hemisphere, papier mâché shells on their axis, then securing them at holes at their poles, and uniting them. Next, gores, strips of segmented maps narrowing to points, are glued in place. Though strides in printing eventually allowed quicker, cheaper production, this manufacturing method has barely changed through the years.

Original hand-colored lithographed gores for 10.2in globe, japan tissue. L.C. Hasselgren, Stockholm, 1864. Realized £60 + buyer’s premium in 2014. Image courtesy of Bloomsbury Auctions and LiveAuctioneers

Because the ancients saw the sun rise and set at the horizon, many believed that the earth is flat. Controversy arose in the fifth century B.C., when Greek philosopher Pythagoras introduced the concept of a spherical earth. The following century, Aristotle, through observation, confirmed this. Yet according to scholars, the earliest known terrestrial globe, depicting the inhabited world and three imagined continents bound by belts of water, appeared hundreds of years later.

Though terrestrial globes apparently existed in ancient Rome and the Islamic world, the oldest surviving one, named Erdapfel (earth-apple in German), dates from 1492. Since Christopher Columbus had not YET completed his first expedition, it does not depict the Americas.

Joslin terrestrial/lunar globes on a cast-iron base with revolving mechanism, 6in diameter. Realized $3,750 + buyer’s premium in 2013. Image courtesy of Grogan & Co. and LiveAuctioneers

As man’s knowledge of the world grew, demand for updated, accurately mapped globes rose. Between 1597 through the early 1600s, the golden age of Dutch mapmaking, cartographers like Van Langren and Hondius competed for the lucrative market. Some, to speed production, copied competitors’ hand-painted or printed maps, simply altering landforms or adding geographical names. Others, like leading globemaker Willem Jansz Blaeu, crafted completely new creations featuring fine, copper-engraved scripts, ornate cartouches and curiously charming images of nomads, sailing ships, sea monsters and cannibals.

Terrestrial globe displaying discoveries of Capt. James Cook, with rococo cartouches, zodiac illustrations on braced horizon band. C.F. Delamarche, 1801. 8.4in diameter on a wooden stand. Image courtesy of Altea Gallery

London globemakers Senex, Adams and Ferguson pioneered globe production through the 1700s, as British trade and travel increased. Cary, Philip , Johnston, C. Smith & Sons, and others followed, marketing not only to educational bodies, but also to Britain’s expanding merchant class.

Through the 1840s, when British societies funded expeditions and fostered natural research, pocket globes, prestigious orbs housed in sleek, fish-skin cases or luxurious, lidded boxes, delighted the country’s upper classes. Though barely 3 inches in diameter, most marked major mountain ranges, rivers, islands, as well as ocean trade winds. Moreover, their interiors sometime featured concave world maps, historical timelines or celestial charts. Since geographic study was a popular Victorian pastime, these tiny globes also graced many a family parlor.

Rare W. & A.K. Johnston 1879 celestial globe, Edinburgh & London, 18in on a cast-iron base, overall 45in x 24in. Realized $3,400 + buyer’s premium in 2015. Image courtesy of North American Auction Co. and LiveAuctioneers

In time, fine globes were produced not only across Europe, but also in America. Early

manufacturers, including Wilson, Joslin, Copley, Franklin and Schedler, were based along the Eastern Seaboard. Though most created standard size globes for home and instructional use, Charles Holbrook created affordable 3- and 5-inch “hemisphere” orbs as hands-on, rudimentary tools for schoolchildren. (Despite their solid wood cores, surviving ones are often worn beyond repair.)

George III pocket globe, John Miller, 1793, terrestrial globe with a hand-colored celestial map applied to the interior of its leather case. Realized $7,500 + buyer’s premium in 2010. Image courtesy of DuMouchelles and LiveAuctioneers

In the early 1860s, A.H. Andrews, a Holbrook employee, set up his own globemaking company in Chicago. Since then, Chicago, home to Weber Costello, Rand McNally, Chicago Globe Makers and other companies, has become the leading center for commercial cartographic publishing and globe production in America.

Many collectors seek vintage terrestrial globes issued in limited numbers. Yet size and condition also affect their value. Those depicting a geographical discovery for the first time – or near its date of discovery, for example, are particularly desirable. So are globes featuring vivid, hand-colored, original maps bearing extensive, crisp detail, symbols and ornamentation – especially those by noted cartographers. A beautiful, original mount may also increase a vintage globe’s worth considerably.

Illuminated brass, glass and paper globe, 17in x 9½in, Paul Dupre-Lafon, circa 1927. Realized $17,000 + buyer’s premium in 2011. Image courtesy of Phillips and LiveAuctioneers

European globes were traditionally mounted on mahogany, walnut, cherry or rosewood bases following popular furniture styles and fashions. American globes were often mounted on turned wood, brass or cast-iron bases. Larger models, displayed in libraries or studies, sat securely atop pedestal floor mounts. Smaller ones, designed for table or desk use, were cradled within low footed bases. Most featured supportive horizontal bands representing the celestial horizon, as well as vertical meridian bands, indicating longitude.

Globes, to some, may all appear alike. Yet to enthusiasts, each, reflecting history, science and art at its time of creation, is a world unto itself.

Jasper52 maps auction Jan. 21 charts distant places

The 18th-century voyages and discoveries by European explorers in the South Pacific are chronicled in one of more than 100 antiquarian maps offered in an online auction that will be conducted by Jasper52 on Tuesday, Jan. 21.

Italian map reflecting the discoveries made in the Southern Pacific Ocean between 1765 and 1769, by Antonio Zatta, G. Zuliani and G Pasquali, published in 1779, 13¼ x 17¼in. Estimate: $1,500-$2,000. Jasper52 image

View the auction here.

Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.

Cruising with a premium antiquarian map auction July 16

Anchors away! Set sail for foreign ports with a Jasper52 online auction of antique and collectible maps and atlases that will launch Tuesday, July 16. The selection of more than 120 lots ranges from a 15th century map of the world that was published a year after Columbus’ first voyage to the New World to a humorous pictorial Wonderground Map of London Town of 1928.

World map dated 1493, woodblock engraving, 18in. x 25in., excellent condition. Estimate: $9,000-$11,000. Jasper52 image

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Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.

Far corners of the globe found in antiquarian map sale May 15

Collectors can find their place in the world and even the solar system by viewing the Premium Antiquarian Maps auction that will be held by Jasper52 on Wednesday, May 15. More than 100 antique illustrated maps and views by some of the most significant cartographers of their times will cross the auction block.

Cellarius celestial map from the Southern Hemisphere, Valk & Schenk edition, 1708, Amsterdam, 16.8in. x 19.1in. Estimate: $2,000-$2,500. Jasper52 image

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Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.

Star lot in Jasper52 map auction Jan. 29 charts Lindbergh flight

A large map charting American aviator Charles A. Lindbergh’s historic flights is one of more than 100 collectible and antique maps offered in an online auction to be conducted by Jasper52 on Tuesday, Jan. 29. Ernest C. Clegg (1876-1954) a British-born artist, illustrator and pictorial cartographer created the Lindbergh map shortly after Lindbergh made the first solo nonstop transatlantic flight, from New York to Paris in May 1927.

Phelps’s National Map of the United States, a Travellers Guide, 1847, cartographers: J.M. Atwood and H. Phelps, 21 x 25.4 inches. Estimate: $600-$700. Jasper52 image

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Mapmakers to the world featured in Jasper52 auction June 26

Maps made by the world’s most renowned cartographers of their times are presented in an auction to be conducted by Jasper52 on Tuesday, June 26. Not only will these antique maps serve as decorative pieces, but they also will reveal innumerable ways to view our world, from Imperial Russia to the to the Strait of Magellan.

Covens and Mortier World Map, Amsterdam, 1745, 19.9 x 25.5 in. Estimate: $1,500-$2,000. Jasper52 image

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Learn more about the auction on Auction Central News.