New and Correct Map of the Rock Island Route - Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railway
By: George F. Cram
Date: 1883 (dated) Chicago
Original Size: 19 x 41 inches (48.25 x 104 cm)
This is a rare example of the first state of this map promoting the Rock Island Railroad and its connection throughout the United State. OCLC locates only two examples of the 1883 edition of this map, which was continued and updated in 1884, 1885, 1886, and 1889.
The second half of the title touts the Rock Island Route as “The passengers favorite route between Chicago and Council Bluffs, Kansas City, Leavebworth, Atchison, Minneapolis, St. Paul, and all points East, West, South-west, and North-west.”
It is clear to see how Chicago became the artery for most railway transport from East to West. Main lines are identified by a thick black line while smaller regional lines are thinner. Some cartographic notes worth mentioning include Dakota, which would not be divided into North and South Dakota into separate states until November of 1889 and Indian Territory, which would not become the state of Oklahoma until 1907.