This specialized monograph concentrates on the period around 1700 when France and Spain were contesting the Gulf region. The crisis provoked by La Salles's incursion focused attention on the lack of maps of the area. Not much had been done since Pineda's 1519 coasting survey. The efforts of Le Maire et al. eventually led to the de l'Isle's famous Carte de la Louisiane et du Cours du Mississipi, coveted by every collector of North American maps. Le Maire (not to be confused with the Le Maire for whom the strait is named) is credited by de l'Isle in the top margin of that map. The text is well illustrated with the crucial manuscript maps leading up to de l'Isle's map. Anyone interested in the historical cartography of Texas and the Gulf coast will find this book quite valuable.
David C. Jolly, 1991
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