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Exceptionally rare map of Maine by John NormanJohn Norman was born in England around 1748 and probably apprenticed with London printer William Faden, father of the great engraver and publisher of the same name.  He moved to America in the early 1770s and first appears there in a May 11, 1774 Pennsylvania Journal advert offering his services as an “Architect and Landscape Engraver.”  In 1781 he moved to Boston, where he operated at several addresses as an engraver and publisher before handing his business to his son William in 1801. He died in Boston in 1817.

The work of John Norman almost entirely lacks the refinement of even middling European engraving of the time, but it often has a kind of crude power, and his entrepreneurial energy involved him in some of the most interesting and important American maps and atlases published in the late 18th century. Among these were Matthew Clark’s Complete Set of Charts of the Coast of America (1789); Norman’s own American Pilot (1790); and Osgood Carleton’s maps of Boston, Maine, Massachusetts and the United States.

Norman also performed numerous non-cartographic engravings, particularly in his earlier years in Boston.  Among these were portraits for Murray’s Impartial History of the War in America (1781), illustrations for the Boston Magazine (1783-84), and architectural images in the important work The Town and Country Builders Assistant (1786). 



14 results, ordered by Publication Date

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Chart from New York to Timber Island

John Norman’s 1791 Chart from New York to Timber Island

A rare American chart of the waters off Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. Chart from New York to Timber Island Including Nantucket Shoals was engraved and first published in 1791 by John Norman, Boston’s most notable post-war map engraver.  It is usually found in Norman’s American Pilot, one of the earliest atlases published in […]

$15,000
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Osgood Carleton, AN ACCURATE MAP of THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS Exclusive of the DISTRICT of MAINE Compiled pursuant to an ACT of the GENERAL COURT From Actual Surveys of the several Towns, &c.... Boston: Published and Sold by O. Carleton & J. Norman, [1798.]

Osgood Carleton’s 1798 Accurate Map of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

A great rarity, this seminal map by Osgood Carleton is by far the best 18th-century map of Massachusetts and one of the earliest officially-sponsored maps of an American state. With extensive expert restoration and priced accordingly, but all-but unobtainable in any condition. The map’s large scale of six miles to the inch gave mapmaker Osgood […]

$15,000
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Osgood Carleton, AN ACCURATE MAP, of The DISTRICT OF MAINE Being Part of the Commonwealth of MASSACHUSETTS: Compiled pursuant to an Act of the GENERAL COURT, From Actual Surveys of the several Towns &c. TAKEN BY THEIR ORDER: Exhibiting, the boundary Lines of the District the Counties and Towns, the principal Roads, Rivers, Mountains, Mines, Islands, Rocks, Shoals, Channels, Lakes, Ponds, Falls, Mills, Manufactures, and Public Buildings, with the Latitudes and Longitudes &c. Boston: Published and Sold by O. Carleton & J. Norman, [1798.]

Osgood Carleton’s 1798 Accurate Map of the District of Maine

A great rarity, Osgood Carleton’s Accurate Map of the District of Maine is among the most desirable early Maine maps, the most detailed to appear in the eighteenth century, and one of the earliest maps sponsored by an American state. Carleton’s map depicts the then-District of Maine at a scale of six miles to the […]

$42,500
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1794 William Norman chart of Chesapeake Bay and Delaware Bay

Rare 1794 chart of Chesapeake Bay from Norman’s “American Pilot”

A mammoth, detailed and rare 18th-century American chart of Chesapeake Bay. From John and William Norman’s American Pilot, one of the earliest atlases published in the United States. This impressive chart depicts the complex coast from New Jersey south to just below Cape Henry, Virginia. It provides an immense amount of detail for Delaware Bay […]

$32,500
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Rare chart of the Maine Coast first published in 1791 by John Norman

18th-century chart of the Maine coast by John Norman

A rare chart of the Maine coast from the American Pilot, published in Boston by John Norman and one of the earliest atlases published in the United States. Chart of the Coast of America from Wood Island to Good Harbour was engraved and first published in Boston in 1791 by John Norman, the most notable of that town’s […]

$12,500
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Exceptionally rare map of Maine by John Norman

Exceptionally rare map of Maine by John Norman

An early, valuable and exceptionally rare map of Maine while still the “Eastern District” of Massachusetts, with the ownership inscription of renowned Maine mapmaker Moses Greenleaf. The map by John Norman of Boston is a reduced edition of An Accurate Map of the District of Maine, which had been compiled by Osgood Carleton, engraved by […]

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A landmark in the mapping of Maine

An essential Maine map. Description This monumental map depicts Maine at a scale of 2.5 miles to the inch. The very large scale enables the map to provide much detail of the intricate coastline and complex system of rivers, streams, lakes and ponds, though surprisingly little attention is paid to its many mountainous areas. The […]

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William Norman New Map of the United States Including Part of Louisiana From the best Authorities

Rare United States map by William Norman

A rare and intriguing little map of the United States issued by Boston publisher William Norman some time after the Louisiana Purchase. The map depicts the United States, including much of the Louisiana Territory just a few years following its acquisition from France. Heavy dashed lines delineate state and territorial boundaries, including Mississippi Territory (established […]

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