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This early map of America was done by Guillaume de l’Isle (Delisle) and entitled “Carte du Mexique et de la Floride des Terres Angloises et des Isles Antilles du Cours et des Environs ” This map was published in Paris in 1708 by Chez l’auteur. The first state of the map was printed in 1703 with this being the fourth state of the map.
The map is described by Tooley as illustrating “.. an area from the Great Lakes to New Mexico and southwards to Panama and Venezuela, and includes the West Indies. The locations of various Indian tribes and villages, French and English forts are shown.” The cartouche was designed by C. Simonneau. It was the first printed map to accurately depict the course and mouth of the Mississippi River.
Guillaume de l’Isle (1675-1726) was son of a cartographer and a pupil of Jean Dominique Cassini, who among other important contributions, aligned the study of astronomy to the study of geography. Under Cassini’s direction, observations were made from locations all over the world that enabled longitudinal calculations to be made with much greater accuracy. De l’Isle carried on this exacting work with remarkable dedication and integrity, constantly revising and improving his maps. While precision was his primary goal, his maps are invariably elegant and attractive. He also served as the Royal Geographer to the King of France.