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The 1753 Fry-Jefferson Map and Its Predecessors and Derivatives

Guide to the Fry-Jefferson Map of Virginia and related maps in the Library of Virginia's collection

Maps and Virginia's Boundary

John Warner
London, ca. 1747 or later
Fourth edition
Engraved map printed on vellum
In “Scrapbook Relating to Thomas, 6th Lord Fairfax, His Estate and Family,” comp. Orlando Fairfax, Richmond, 18–.
Bound volume
Special Collections
Call number: CS71 .F167 18–

In 1737 William Mayo drafted A Map of the Northern Neck in Virginia (published in 1745) based on the surveys completed by the Crown’s party. Fairfax rejected Mayo’s draft and hired John Warner, surveyor for King George County, to prepare another map to summarize the findings of the Fairfax surveyors. Warner used field notes provided by the Fairfax party to produce a map that favored Fairfax’s claims. It was the first published map to show accurately the courses of the Potomac and Rappahannock Rivers, their headwaters, and the location of the Blue Ridge and the Allegheny Mountains. The broken line between the two rivers represents the western limits of the Northern Neck Proprietary as ordered by the Crown on 11 April 1745.

In this fourth state the title has been augmented with additional material, a new cartouche encloses the title, the Fairfax coat of arms has been added, and the Fairfax Line is included with four lines of descriptive text. The county boundaries are not delineated.

Peter Jefferson and Robert Brooke II, [1747], 1860
Copied from original manuscript in State Paper Office, London. Book 12, No. 16. Charles Booth
Pen and ink with watercolor on linen
Call number: G3882 .N5 1746 .J44 1860

Once the Privy Council ordered another survey be conducted to determine the Fairfax Line, Virginia’s lieutenant governor Sir William Gooch appointed Joshua Fry as one of the commissioners on behalf of the Crown, while Lord Fairfax reappointed William Fairfax and William Beverly. The Crown’s commissioners chose Peter Jefferson and Robert Brooke II to survey the line, and Benjamin Winslow and Thomas Lewis worked on behalf of Lord Fairfax. In January 1747, the four surveyors met at Tuckahoe, where Peter Jefferson lived, and produced a map based on Mayo’s 1737 map of the region. The map solidified the Virginia colony’s claims to the Valley of Virginia.

This particular copy was traced on linen in 1860 from the original manuscript copy in the State Paper Office, London, and sent to Virginia. On 4 April 1865, Fred Lindal wrote to a Mr. Bughee of Chautauqua County, New York, asking him to look over the relics he was sending, including this tracing. In 1941 Mrs. Lewis F. Lindal, of Buffalo, New York, sold this copy to the Virginia State Library for five dollars.

Survey of the Virginia–North Carolina boundary Line West of the Allegheny Mountains
Thomas Walker (1715–1794) and Daniel Smith (1748–1818)
Pencil and pen and ink
Call number: G3881 .F1 1779 .W35

In 1779 Virginians Dr. Thomas Walker and General Daniel Smith and North Carolinians Colonel Richard Henderson and William B. Smith surveyed the dividing line between the two colonies to extend the line beyond Fry and Jefferson’s stopping point. The North Carolina surveyors traveled as far as the Cumberland Mountains, but Walker and Smith pushed westward to the Cumberland River and continued until they finally
reached the Tennessee River in March 1780. This south-oriented manuscript map shows the boundary line that they determined, the rivers and mountains crossing it, and their route from Clear Fork to the Cumberland River.