Carte du Canal De Bahama


Bellin, Jacques Nicolas (1703-1772)


The label of this chart of the New Bahama Channel or Florida Straits says that is was based on information mostly from English navigators. The depiction of the peninsula as islands is similar to the Gibson and Jefferys maps of 1763 and on whose map of 1764. The many coastal names are along the areas most frequently travelled and date back to the early Spanish use of this route to transport shipments from Vera Cruz to Havana, then along the coast of Florida to near Bermuda and on to Europe.
The Bahama Islands and Florida Peninsula are not accurately placed in relation to each other according to the latitude line in the center of the chart. “Les Isles Biminy” is fairly accurately placed at 25° north but the Florida Peninsula has the label “Pe de Florida” (Cape Florida at 30° north latitude). However, the relation east to west and the relation between the peninsula and Cuba seem to be fairly accurate.
Bellin, whose title was “Hydrographe du roi” was first chief hydrographic engineer of the Depot des cartes, plans et journaux du ministere de la Marine and was responsible for at least 16 map publications, some consisting of five volumes each.


Tooley, Servies, Phillips
Image scanned from a reproduction in a private collection.

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