William Scull (1739-1784), To the Honourable Thomas Penn and Richard Penn Esquires..the Province of Pennsylvania...
To the Honourable Thomas Penn and Richard Penn Esquires..the Province of Pennsylvania...
Printed, James Nevil, Philadelphia, 1770
Engraving with original outline coloring
Engraved by Henry Dawkins
p.m. 22 x 32 1/4"
Frame size 29 x 43"
Ref: Wheat & Brun 425
This important 1770 map of Pennsylvania was created by cartographer William Scull for the brothers Penn, Thomas, Richard and John. The map was commissioned by the Penns to ensure that the borders of their province were properly documented, as well as to detail the settled parts of the province itself. Scull was chosen for not only his acumen as a surveyor, but also due to his family connections. In 1759, before William’s appointment, his grandfather Nicholas Scull was commissioned by the Penns to create a map of similar purpose. Using his grandfather’s map, as well as his own successful 1769 surveys of Lancaster, Cumberland, Northampton and Berks Counties, Scull produced the first map of the province of Pennsylvania having its southern line based firmly upon the survey that Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon had concluded two years earlier.
It includes Berks, Bucks, Chester, Cumberland, Lancaster, Northampton, Philadelphia and York Counties, as well as Fort Pitt, the site of present-day Pittsburgh. The original Philadelphia city grid is clearly displayed along the Delaware River, as well as the improved roads that existed to aid travel in between counties. The western, sparsely populated area on the map not only depict settlements, but also notes the presence of coal in the Allegheny Mountains, foreshadowing the growth of the mining industry in western Pennsylvania. The bottom left of the map contains a caption referencing the disputed boundary between Pennsylvania and Virginia. According to Scull, Pennsylvania actually extended fifty miles to the south of the border shown on the map, into disputed territory, that would have placed the boundary line in what was then Virginia, but is now the present-day West Virginia.
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