1781 Map of Manhattan and Brooklyn

1781 Map of Manhattan and Brooklyn

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1871 Plan de New-York et des îles Environnantes (Map of New York and Surrounding Islands) by French General Rochambeau. 

The hand-drawn map from 1781, depicts NYC and its surroundings, including fortifications, towns, farms, major roads, soundings and topography. The map is from Rochambeau, a French general who helped the George Washington and the Continental Army win independence during the American Revolution. In the spring of 1781, General Washington and Rochambeau considered an attack on British-captured New York from White Plains where they had joined their armies, with Rochambeau creating many maps and surveys of the region.  

While Washington held out for an attack on New York, Rochambeau offered plans to attack in Chesapeake Bay, where they would likely have a greater chance for victory.  In August, news arrived in White Plains that French Admiral de Grasse was headed to the Chesapeake Bay with ships and troops he had gathered, leading the generals to set their new target –the British forces under General Cornwallis in Virginia. Known as the Battle of Yorktown, the British under General Charles Cornwallis were forced to surrender in what proved to be the climactic battle of the RevolutionaryWar.

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