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[KODIAK ISLAND] Merkatorskaya karta Kadiakskogo Arkhipelaga, sostavlena Rossiiskoyu Amerikanskoyu kompanineyu po noveishym svedeniyam. 1849 [i.e. Mercator's Map of the Kodiak Archipelago Compiled by the Russian American Company, Based on the Newest Intelligence. 1849]
St. Petersburg, 1849. Large copper engraved map 53x46 cm, includes ten insets; with the distance scales indicated both for the main map and the insets. Original fold marks, a tear neatly repaired, otherwise very good. Very rare interesting map of the Kodiak Archipelago issued in the Otchet Rossiisko-Amerikanskoi Kompanii za odin god, po 1 yanvarya 1849 goda [i.e. Annual Report of the Russian American Company for one year, up to 1 January, 1849]. The map represents the most accomplished survey of the archipelago at the time, with detailed and thorough mapping of its northern part, namely of Afognak, Shuyak, Marmot, Raspberry, Spruce, and other islands, and northern and central regions of the Kodiak Island; the Trinity Islands and Chirikov Island (southern part of the archipelago) are also mapped very precisely. The southern part of Kodiak island is outlined, but no details apart from the main capes are given. The map indicates the main capes, bays, mountains, native and Russian settlements - the latter with villages ('seleniya') distinguished from outposts ('odinochki'); depths are indicated in sazhens. The insets give detailed views of 1) a part of the Shelikof Strait; 2) Sitkalidak Strait; 3) southern part of the Kodiak Island; 4) south-eastern part of the Kodiak Island; 5) Ugak Bay; 6) southern part of the Afognak Island; 7) Spruce Island; 8) Woody Island; 9) Chiniak Bay; 10) Chiniak Cape. The map was prepared during the time of Mikhail Tebenkov (1802-1872) as the governor of Russian America and the Chief Administrator of the Russian American-Company (1845-1850). It was during this time that a wide scale effort of topographical survey of the north-west coast of America was undertaken, which resulted in the publication of the Atlas of the Northwest Coasts of America: from Bering Strait to Cape Corrientes and the Aleutian Islands (1825, 40 maps and views). Kodiak Archipelago, as well as Cook Inlet, Montague, Tugidak and Sitkinak Islands were surveyed and mapped by a native navigator Illarion Ivanovich Arkhimandritov (1820-1872) in 1846-1848. The results of his work were used during the publication of Tebenkov's ''Atlas''. Most likely, the map published in the Annual Report of the Russian American Company for 1848, was based on the same data, as it is dated the same year as two maps of the Kodiak Island in Tebenkov's Atlas - 1849. Lada-Mocarski on the Annual Reports of the Russian American Company (1843-1865, 21 issues): ''In 1842 the stockholders in St. Petersburg, expressed the wish to have the R.-A. Co. pay its dividends every year rather than every second year as was customary until then. For this reason, the company's management decided to publish printed annual reports and the first of these, covering the full year 1842, was issued early in 1843. This practice was followed through 1863 and afforded the shareholders, as well as others interested in the affairs of the company, much detailed and valuable information not otherwise available. Needless to say, this information was carefully selected and undoubtedly colored by the management's own views. Nevertheless, it provides both factual data and the company's interpretation of events in Russian America of utmost importance for the historian of that period. A complete set of these reports is almost impossible to procure now. Yet they are a rich mine of information, both textual and in the form of appended maps, views, etc., some of which are in color. Anyone interested in the original and contemporary source material on Alaska, for a period of some 20 consecutive years, would be well advised to seek out the libraries which have these reports and study them from cover to cover'' (Lada-Mocarski 118).
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Last Found On: 2017-10-12           Check availability:      Biblio    

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