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William Faden / Charles Stedman:  A Topographical Map of the Northn. Part of New York Island, Exhibiting the Plan of Fort Washington, now Fort Knyphausen, shewing the several Attacks of the Royal Army.

Maps of the Northeast (New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey)


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Title: A Topographical Map of the Northn. Part of New York Island, Exhibiting the Plan of Fort Washington, now Fort Knyphausen, shewing the several Attacks of the Royal Army.

Map Maker: William Faden /  Charles Stedman

Place / Date: London / 1793

Coloring: Uncolored

Size: 18 x 10 inches

Condition: VG+

Price: $1,400.00

Inventory ID: 42583


Description:

Fine large format map depicting the Theater of War in and around New York Island, published in London by John Stedman. 

After the British occupied New York City, General Washington evacuated Manhattan, except for Fort Washington at the northern tip of the island. The British under General Howe moved north and attacked the main American army at White Plains in October 1776. But the Americans remained in control of Fort Washington. On November 16, 1776, the British mounted a six-column attack on the fort that forced the patriots to surrender. Washington's decision not to evacuate Fort Washington was one of his most serious tactical errors of the war. Almost three thousand men were taken prisoner and the British seized large quantities of supplies and weapons. Four days later General Cornwallis was sent to take Fort Lee on the opposite New Jersey shore, but the Americans stationed there had retreated.

The map was originally drawn by Claude Sauthier in 1777.  Sauthier illustrates the four phases of the attack with the letters A through D. The key at right identifies the first attack as that by Gen. Knyphausen, the second by Matthews and Cornwallis, the third as a feint, and the fourth by Lord Percy. Sauthier's delineation of upper Manhattan was the most accurate and detailed to date. The map extends from Haerlem and McGowan’s Pass in the south to Tetards Hill, and in the north shows the Redoubt and Fort Lee or Fort Constitution on the West Bank of the Hudson River, along with Fort Washington and the many battle details shown on the east side of the Hudson, and is widely regarded as the best contemporary plan of this battle. The British had a keen interest in the details of the war with the colonies, and manuscript maps and notes were regularly sent back to London and immediately made available in printed form by the leading printers of the day, including Faden, Dury, Lodge, Sayer and others. 

This example of the map is a second printing and was designed for Charles Stedman's The History of the Origin, Progress, and Termination of the American War which Sabin considers"the best contemporary account of the Revolution written from the British side. Stedman was a loyalist from Philadelphia who left America but continued his interest after that time.  


References: Cumming, British Maps, pp. 72-74; Guthorn, British Maps of the Revolution, pp. 41-42; Nebenzahl, Atlas of the American Revolution, pp. 90-91; Nebenzahl, Bibliography of Printed Battle Plans, #116; Wallis, American War of Independence, #116.


Related Categories:
Maps of the Northeast (New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey)
City Plans & Views of Eastern US Cities