1862 Johnson’s Map of New York and the Adjacent Cities

Mockup of 1862 NYC map
Mockup of 1862 Johnson’s Map of New York and the Adjacent Cities

I was planning to have a New York City-area map for our third featured map reprint.  So, I decided on the version we adapted from the 1862 edition of the Johnson’s New Illustrated Family Atlas. Curiously, prior to 1862 the Johnson’s Atlas did not feature a NYC map!  As noted in an earlier post, Johnson’s Atlas map were drawn upon Colton maps since Johnson got the rights to them. The  depicts the island of Manhattan and the borough of Brooklyn as well as parts of cities in New Jersey, namely, Jersey City and Hoboken.  The map also features Central Park; however, where modern-day park-goers would expect to find the Great Lawn, the Old Reservoir stood in its place.  The prominent Civil War-era military hospital on Roosevelt Island, which is in ruins today (if it even stands), was standing tall

Close up of the Battery on the 1862 Johnson's New York
A sectional close up of the 1862 Johnson’s Map of New York and the Adjacent Cities

For our reprint of the 1862 NYC map, Xiaojing, my partner in crime, decided she wanted to punch the colors up only a little while creating a warm aged tone overall. You can see from the above mockup and closeup.  One of the nifty things about the Johnson’s map is that they feature hand-painted sections.  For the piers and harbors, they didn’t get too precise,  but it’s authentic a map taken from Google can’t match.

blue alternate version of 1862 Johnson's New York
Blue version 1862 Johnson’s Map of New York and the Adjacent Cities – mockup

Xiaojing also decided if we were going to do a blue version of the map reprint, she wanted something could feel at home in an architectural firm or in a swanky coffeehouse.  I’ve noticed her blue version looks great in rooms that have a cool grey feel to them.

Close up of the blue version 1862 Johnson's New York
A sectional close up of the blue version 1862 Johnson’s Map of New York

Sometime next week, I plan on featuring our 1870 Johnson’s New York City and Brooklyn map reprint here on the blog.  It has a very different feel in comparison to the 1862 map.  The 1862 has this warm vibe to it, where the 1870 version feels kind of sleek.  I like both.

Look for a perfect gift for the New Yorker in your life? You can get a reprint of the 1862 NYC map here.

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