Multiple Authors

Lot 2. MULTIPLE antique surveyors plans BACK BAY, BOSTON , Massachusetts

A lot consisting of twenty mid 19th-century surveyors' manuscripts, MS traces, and blueprints from Boston, Massachusetts.

DESCRIPTION: A lot consisting of twenty lot and street plans from Boston, Massachusetts generally from the decade of the 1880's. Most items by surveyors and engineers William H. Whitney or the firm of Fuller and Whitney, Back Bay Engineers. An opportunity for a serious collector of Boston cartography to expand his collection with items he cannot find except in institutions. See full detailed lot description.

From the mid 1850’s through 1890 Boston conducted the most ambitious land-making of the era in the U.S. by transporting and placing gravel, ashes, and sand in an area that was previously a tidal marsh of the Charles River. The landfill of Boston’s Back Bay was fueled by a shortage of suitable land for new construction and the desire to remediate water pollution resulting from earlier bad decisions that placed profit ahead of citizen’s health and welfare.

Over a period of 35 years more than 450 acres of new land was added to Boston by filling the Back Bay with an average of 20 feet of fill. Much of this land was purchased by well-to-do Bostonians and today the Back Bay remains one of the most prestigious locations within that city.

We have been able to obtain 20 rare late 19th century artifacts that document the last decade of the 35 year land-making project in Boston’s Back Bay, for an area from Charlesgate Park to past Kenmore Square.

These maps and plans shed light on some of the decision-making factors and design options for Boston real-estate developers. These artifacts in this lot are of three types: hand-drawn or manuscript survey maps, manuscript traces of those surveys, and blueprints. The artifacts represent a very early application and adaptation of a cutting-edge technology: blueprinting.

CREATOR: Multiple Authors




CONDITION: Varies.  Items in the lot range from very good to poor condition. Visual inspection of the lot is encouraged.



SIZE:  " x "


PRICE: $6200


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