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F. C. EWER HANDWRITTEN LETTER SIGNED DESIGNER OF 1869 NANTUCKET MAP, CLERGYMAN

$90.00

Description

FERDINAND C. EWER HANDWRITTEN LETTER SIGNED, "Very Truly Yours, F. C. Ewer", 5 x 3.75, Wednesday in Holy Week, 1880, New York, letter of acknowledgment to another minister, by rector of Christ Church in New York City and designer of the rare 1869 historical map of Nantucket island. Age toning and stain to right edge, otherwise in fine condition. 

Ferdinand C. Ewer (1826-83) It is not clear exactly what prompted the Reverend Ewer to design his historical map of Nantucket. Although he had spent many years of his youth on the island, where his family had deep roots, he had long since left it behind. After graduating from Harvard, he had tried his hand unsuccessfully at several occupations in California (panning for gold, making maps for a civil engineer, and working as a reporter) before experiencing a barroom conversion and entering the ministry. His religious duties then took him to New York City, where he served as rector of Christ Church.

Ewer’s map provides a detailed synopsis of Nantucket’s history, beginning with Gosnold’s sighting of the island in 1602. The chronological table identifies the major stages in Nantucket’s development-its early settlement and land divisions, the evolution from shore to deep-sea whaling, the establishment of religious and educational institutions, and the development of the transportation network connecting Nantucket with the mainland (and Nantucketers with one another). Ewer also notes events that marked the transition from one era to the next-the first island whaler to seek its prey in the Pacific (1791), the death of the last Indian (1822), the great fires of 1836 and 1846, and the first gaslight in 1854. In more graphic form the map indicates the sites of old settlements and burial grounds, as well as the boundaries of sachem rights, the former shoreline, old fishing stages, and whaling stations.” 

$90   #11286