George Washington and His Maps

In his journey from surveyor to soldier to leader, our first president used cartography to get a feel for the young nation

Many of George Washington's decisions during his long career were made only after careful readings of the existing cartographical materials. (The Granger Collection, New York)

Map 8: A Map of the United States According to the Definitive Treaty

Map of USA according to Definitive Treaty
(Yale University Library)

This 3–by-2-foot map shows the boundaries of the new country as established by the Treaty of Paris, which ended the American Revolution. This was also the first important map that designated the United States by name. No wonder Washington had it in his collection. “You see the U.S. as one unified country here,” Schecter says. “He probably took great pride in that.” (In the inset to the map, the United States is shown without state borders, making it seem even more of a homogenous entity, which also no doubt pleased the general.)


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