The book is a catalogue of maps on exhibition at the college in 1996 with an essay on the historical background of North Carolina and the events which the maps portray. Far from exhaustive, the selections touch the highlights of any collection of the area: the White/De Bry map, the Dutch school, Ogilby, Morden, Moll, Mouzon, Homann, and a host of Americans. Speed is absent, however. What the exhibition might have lacked in breadth or depth, the authors have supplemented in the discussion relating to the maps. For example, the text cites twenty-one derivatives of the Tanner New Universal Atlas map which are represented by an 1852 Thomas, Cowperthwait issue. The introductory essay touches on emergent Carolina, its physical characteristics, settlement patterns, economic development, and Civil War situation. The book does not pretend to approach the comprehensiveness of a Cumming, but it provides a quick digest of the history and geography of the state that many will enjoy.
Jon K. Rosenthal, 1998
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