Map of Atlantic Coast of North America from the Chesapeake Bay to Florida


Joan Vinckeboons (1617–70) was a Dutch cartographer and engraver born into a family of artists of Flemish origin. He was employed by the Dutch West India Company and for more than 30 years produced maps for use by Dutch mercantile and military shipping. He was a business partner of Joan Blaeu, one of the most important map and atlas publishers of the day. Vinckeboons drew a series of 200 manuscript maps that were used in the production of atlases, including Blaeu’s Atlas Maior. This pen-and-ink and watercolor map from around 1639 shows the Atlantic Coast of the present-day United States from the Chesapeake Bay to Florida. Included are the coastline, coastal features, navigational hazards, rhumb lines, Native American nations and settlements, streams, and a decorative wind rose. Relying on a mixture of contemporary and historical sources, the map concentrates on the English settlements in southern Virginia and the Outer Banks area of present-day North Carolina. The map was once part of a manuscript atlas belonging to the Dutch firm of Gerard Hulst van Keulen, which published sea atlases and navigational handbooks for over two centuries. With the demise of the firm, the atlas was acquired and broken up by the Amsterdam book dealer Frederik Muller, who in 1887 sold 13 maps from the atlas attributed to Vinckeboons to the collector and bibliographer Henry Harrisse. This map is part of the Henry Harrisse Collection in the Library of Congress.

Last updated: October 19, 2015