Statehood in the West


A New Map of the United States of America

James Hamilton Young, (1850)

The population of California exploded so rapidly as a result of the gold rush, that by 1850 it had met statehood qualifications and was admitted into the Union as the 31st state. On this map, San Francisco is connected to Chicago and Jefferson City by a thick dashed line, which represents the proposed route for the “Great Pacific Railroad,” which is explained further in the note just above the bottom margin.

An interesting aspect of this map is its attempt to detail the various natural curiosities found in the west. One of the more interesting notes on this map the description of The Bad Lands as “a Region abounding in Fossils.” Another indicates the location of an unnamed volcano reported to be “in a state of eruption.”