Item #5656 Geological Map of the Middle and Western States. James Hall.

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Geological Map of the Middle and Western States.

New York: Endicott & Co., litho., 1843. Hand-colored lithograph map, 22.5” x 32” plus margins. CONDITION: Very good, a few tiny chips at folds, barely any wear.

A pioneering geological map of a portion of the United States by the eminent American geologist James Hall. 

The map extends from New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia in the east to the Mississippi River, and from the Great Lakes south to Kentucky. Twenty-three different geological strata are separately colored and correspond to a color key in the lower right corner, identifying such characteristics as the Niagara Group; Carboniferous Limestone; Potsdam Sandstone; Utica Slate, and so on. This was the first published map to use the “New York System” of stratigraphic nomenclature, which was developed by Hall and other New York Geological Survey members, and is widely regarded as a landmark map in geological cartography. 

In 1836, Hall was appointed state geologist for the Geological Survey of New York. His work in this capacity culminated in his large report Geology of New York—a classic work in American geology; this map appeared in Part IV (1843). The “New York System” emphasized the importance of paleontology for delineating geological units and introduced the concept of “type locality”—a primary reference location used for defining the characteristics of geological formations. The new system evolved into the standard nomenclature used today for North America and much of the rest of the world. 

Born in Hingham, Mass., geologist and paleontologist James Hall (1811–1898) made important contributions to the theory of mountain building. His research demonstrated how sediment buildup in a shallow basin leads the basin to sink, and in turn causes the nearby area to rise. His painstaking studies established the stratigraphy of eastern North America, and his research was also pivotal in creating the geosynclinal theory. In 1871, Hall became director of the Museum of Natural History in Albany, New York, having previously served as state geologist of Iowa (1855–1858), and of Wisconsin (1857–1860). He published widely on numerous phases of the geology and paleontology of the U.S. and Canada, and for a period taught chemistry, natural science, and geology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. 

A landmark of American geological mapping.

REFERENCES: “James Hall American Geologist” at Britannica online.

Item #5656

Price: $1,250.00

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