Rare French & Indian War era map of the area between the southern part of Lake Champlain and Fort Edward.
The map was one of the earliest maps of North America to appear in the Gentleman's Magazine.
This map depicts the area surrounding Lake George, along the northeastern border of New York state, extending up to Lake Champlain. Several forts are shown, including Fort Ticonderoga, along with a very good path east and west next to the Drown'd Lands. One of the trails is labeled Dieskau's Path referring to the route taken by French and Indian forces under the command of German Baron Ludwig August Dieskau and British and Colonial troops under Sir William Johnson that resulted in a series of skirmishes and engagements known collectively as The Battle of Lake George. This battle was the first significant win against the French forces by British Provincials.
This map illustrates events of the French and Indian Wars. In 1757, the Marquis de Montcalm marched a sizable force from Fort Carillon (renamed Fort Ticonderoga when captured by the British in 1759), and laid siege to English forces at Fort William Henry. The English eventually were forced to surrender because reinforcements did not arrive. The ensuing Fort William Henry massacre was greatly exaggerated in the press and British troops were extremely reluctant to surrender to the French thereafter.
The Gentleman’s Magazine was a British publication that helped to normalize the use of maps in support of articles and features. It was founded in 1731 by the prominent London publisher Edward Cave, a pioneer in periodical journalism. The magazine continued in print for nearly two centuries, shuttering production in 1922.
This was the publication which first used the word “magazine”, from the French for storehouse. Cave wanted to create a storehouse of knowledge and he employed some of London’s best writers to fill his pages: Samuel Johnson gained his first regular employment by writing for the Gentleman’s Magazine. Other famous contributors included Jonathan Swift.
The publication covered a broad range of topics, from literature to politics, and, from 1739, frequently used maps as illustrations. The first map they printed was a woodcut of Crimea; the second was a fold-out map of Ukraine by Emanuel Bowen. Maps were used to show battle lines, to chronicle voyages, and to educate about areas with which Britain traded. Certain geographers, like Thomas Jefferys, contributed several maps to the publication.