Discover early Americas cartography at PBA Galleries Oct. 29

'Atlas to Thompson's Alcedo or Dictionary of America & West Indies' by Aaron Arrowsmith. Estimate: $30,000-$50,000. PBA Galleries image

‘Atlas to Thompson’s Alcedo or Dictionary of America & West Indies’ by Aaron Arrowsmith. Estimate: $30,000-$50,000. PBA Galleries image


SAN FRANCISCO – On Thursday, Oct. 29, PBA Galleries will auction Part I of the Warren Heckrotte Collection of Rare Cartography, Exploration and Voyages. Built over a span of more than 50 years, the collection features rare and important landmarks in the exploration of the Americas, particularly the Pacific slope and the Northwest coast. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through

Part One concentrates on the time from the beginning of the mapping of the New World through the epic discoveries of Lewis and Clark. Included are maps and printed books of great rarity and import, many of which are seldom on the market.

An atlas of the most important wall maps of the Americas from the early 19th century is among the highlights of the sale. Atlas to Thompson’s Alcedo or Dictionary of America & West Indies by Aaron Arrowsmith and published by George Smeeton contains five engraved maps on 19 sheets, each colored in outline. It was originally issued as an accompaniment to G.A. Thompson’s translation of Col. Don Antonio de Alcedo’s geographical and historical dictionary of the Americas. The maps in the atlas consist of a map exhibiting new discoveries in the interior parts of North America; a map of the United States; a map of Mexico and adjacent provinces; a chart of the West Indies and Spanish Dominions in North America; and outlines of the physical and political division of South America (Estimate: $30,000-$50,000).

Also featured in the sale is the rare first edition of Voyage of the Fleet Captain Sarychev over the northeastern part of Siberia, Frozen Sea and the Pacific Ocean, lasting eight years, with the geographical and astronomical expedition, under the command of Fleet Captain Billings, from 1785 to 1793. Part I. (Part II.) This is Sarychev’s account of the Billings expedition to explore the shores of north eastern Siberia, the Sea of Okhotsk, Kamchatka, the Aleutian Islands, and part of the American continent. The lot includes the desirable and important atlas volume containing portraits, views, maps and coastal outlines engraved by some of the most noted Russian engravers of the time (estimate: $30,000-$50,000).


PBA Vancouver

‘A Voyage of Discovery to the North Pacific Ocean, and Round the World,’ by George Vancouver, 1798, three volumes (estimate: $$25,000-$30,000). PBA Galleries image.


Other high points include A Voyage of Discovery to the North Pacific Ocean, and Round the World, by George Vancouver, 1798 (above), the first edition complete in three quarto volumes and the folio atlas of charts and coastal views (estimate: $25,000-$30,000). The first printed map to show San Francisco, Miguel Costansó’s Carta Reducida Del Oceano Asiatico, Ó Mar Del Sur, 1771 (estimate: $20,000-$30,000; A Map Exhibiting all the New Discoveries in the Interior Parts of North America by Aaron Arrowsmith, 1802, one of a series of maps by Arrowsmith in the sale, this one of grave importance as being the rare issue taken by Lewis and Clark on their trek across the continent (estimate: $20,000-$30,000); and Cornelius Wytfliet’s Histoire Universelle des Indes Occidentales … , 1605, the French language edition of the first atlas of America (estimate: $15,000-$20,000).

The auction will begin at 11 a.m. Pacific Time. For more information, contact the PBA Galleries at 451-989-2665.


cartographyView the fully illustrated catalog and register to bid absentee or live via the Internet as the sale is taking place by logging on to