This map contains elements from previous maps; most specifically, the cartouche is copied from De Vaugondy's 1755 map of Canada. The map is hand coloured with the colours showing the British and French possessions of the area covered. The atlas this map is from was published between 1776 and 1784. Sources consulted do not specify which printing this map is from although as the 1st state it was earlier, rather than later in this period.
Different sources have different publication dates for this atlas. The Library of Congress uses information from the supplementary index to date it to 1843. This is a fine steel engraving typical of Archer's work.
There are several interesting notes on the founding of the various English settlements covered by the map. The accompanying magazine article points out that the purpose of the map is illustrate the "just" claims of Great Britain and the "encroachments" of the French.
The map includes numerous notations giving the reader some historical and environmental context. Examples of these are: "The climate of this land is a great deal more temperate than Hudsons Bay" for an area in western Ontario north of the Lake of the Woods and "Christian Sea discovered by Jn Monk in 1619" on Baffin Bay.
This map presents an early example of a common issue with atlas maps of the 19th century: once the map has been detached from the atlas, it can be every difficult to determine which atlas it actually came from because plates were resold and re-purposed extensively. In this case there seem to be only 2 choices: the ca.1831 Edinburgh geographical and historical atlas published by Daniel Lizar and the ca.1842 Lizars' Edinburgh geographical general atlas published by William H. Lizars (Daniel's son). According to Phillips (761, 782) the plate numbers are even the same. Walter was certain this was the 1842 version and this is likely the case as the outline colour of our map differs from the outline colour of the 1831 map available on the David Rumsey web site.
Relief shown by hachures. The map shows a river connection between Slave Lake and the Pacific through Cook's River. This was a theory expounded by Pond. With first two pages of text, pp 197, 198, from Gentleman's Magazine, titled: "Description of the Country from Lake Superior to Cook's River. Extract of a Letter from someone of Quebec, to a Friend in London. This intriguing map is based on the map and report by Peter Pond in 1787. The map traces the route from Lake Superior to Lake Winnipeg and then through an interconnected chain of lakes and rivers to Arabaska Lake and Slave Lake. The most interesting feature is the speculative river flowing out of Slave Lake, over "falls said to be the largest in the known world," and emptying into Cook Inlet in Alaska, a remarkable journey considering the topography. Pond's map influenced Alexander Mackenzie's quest to find the Northwest Passage in his famous expedition in the region.
A map of a large swath of land from present day Québec down to Boston during the 7 years war, presumably before the fall of Québec city. Title in scrollwork cartouche at center top. Extends to below Boston and west to include Lake Ontario. Details in text starting at page 223. Historical place names and border delineations abound before the changes brought about by the Treaties of Paris in 1763 and 1783. The map's extent should include the eastern shore of Georgian Bay, Lake Huron, and Lake Simcoe but do not.