Biographies of Some of the More Famous Cartographers
Francois Valentyn (1666-1727) issued “Oud En Nieuw Oost Indien”, an eight volume travel book published by J. Van Braam and G. onder de Linden in Amsterdam between 1724 and 1726. Valentyn, born in Dodrecht, became a celebrated traveller who went to Batavia in 1685 as an ecclesiastic in the employ of the Dutch East India Company. The five volume work is often referred to as the ‘Encyclopaedia of the Dutch East Indies’.
The Family VALK
The Schenk family, with co-publishers, the Valks, were among the most prolific and best known publishers of eighteenth century Amsterdam, issuing prints, maps, books and atlases. Their work was invariably finely presented though was primarily reissued from other map-makers’ printing plates, including Visscher, De Wit, Jansson and others. However, their work demonstrates the precision and elegance associated with maps and engravings produced in this important cartographical period.
The Family VISSCHER
Among the many great Dutch map publishers active in the seventeenth century were the Visscher family; the firm was begun by Claes Jansz Visscher (1587-1652), and subsequently included his son Nicolaas (1618-1679), grandson Nicolaas II (1649-1702) and then his grandson’s widow, Elizabeth, until her death in 1726.
Although mainly art dealers, the Visschers were prolific publishers, producing individual maps and also atlases made up to their customers’ specifications. Indeed, they are commonly regarded as second only to the Blaeus among Dutch map-makers for the high quality of engraving and decoration and the geographical accuracy of their many maps. Particularly outstanding - not only as maps but as works of art - are their world maps.
John J VALLANCE
John J. Vallance (1770-1823) was born in Scotland and emigrated to America in 1791 where he was to become a renowned engraver and publisher working from 145 Spruce Street in Philadelphia. In 1792 he made his name, along with James Thackara, by issuing the original engraving of Samuel Ellicott’s survey of Washington – the first official plan of the city. Vallance later worked for such publishers as Carey, Guthrie and Wayne.
Philadelphia was to become, in the latter half of the nineteenth century, a centre for the resurgence of atlas production. Such mapmakers as Colton, Mitchell and Coweperthwait were all to publish their works in this Pennsylvanian cit
Further information about many of these cartographers may be found in the volumes of Tooley's Dictionary - an invaluable addition to any map collection or single item.