Official Map of Marin County, California 1892 Compiled from Records and Surveys.

Cartographer(s): George M. Dodge
Date: 1892
Place: San Francisco
Dimensions: 134 x 133.5 cm (52.75 x 52.5 in)
Condition Rating: VG

Out of stock

Dodge’s monumental 1892 wall map of Marin County: the greatest Marin map ever made.


Rare wall map of Marin county, the largest, most detailed, and most influential survey of the county made during the nineteenth century.

George M. Dodge was an engineer working in Marin at the end of the 19th century. In addition to creating this survey of Marin County, he was also involved in the tourism railway to Mount Tamalpais in 1898. This stunning map gives us a glimpse of Marin County at the end of the 19th century. Towns, county roads, and ferry routes (from San Francisco to Sausalito and Tiburon) had been established by this time and are shown on this map. The surrounding counties of San Francisco, Contra Costa, and Sonoma are outlined.

Also illustrated are the remaining Mexican land grants in Marin, such as the ranchos of Sausalito, Los Reyes, Corte Madera, Quentin, Novato, Nicasio, and San Geronimo. When California came under Mexican rule in 1821, land grants were made to the early settlers in the state, known as Californios, to populate California. Also, the Mexican governor, realizing that political changes were imminent as the United States was moving towards war with Mexico, hastily granted titles of land in Marin County to friends, military figures, and settlers, most of them from Great Britain, between 1834 and 1846. These grants were huge, and many would be worth billions of dollars today. When the United States took possession of California and other Mexican lands in 1848, it was bound by the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo to honor the legitimate land claims of Mexican citizens residing in those captured territories. By the end of the 19th century, these land grants had been passed down and distributed among the families of the original Californios. Most of the land was eventually sold outside the family. Many of the original grantees lost all of their property to the lawyers who carried their cases to the U.S. Court and accepted land instead of fees. These initial land grants shaped many of the existing settlement patterns and boundaries in Marin County today. Among the original land grants shown on this map, we find:

Rancho Sausalito:
This land grant was originally given to William Richardson (English) in 1835. Nineteen thousand five hundred seventy-one acres, this area included Sausalito, Marin City, Muir Woods, Stinson Beach, and southern Mill Valley. Richardson ran up huge debts, eventually mortgaging the property and losing most of it in foreclosure to Samuel Throckmorton. Throckmorton went on to develop the town of Mill Valley, and the 640 acres Richardson left to his wife were sold to create the city of Sausalito.

Corta Madera del Presidio:
This area, which encompasses Belvedere, Tiburon, northern Mill Valley, Corte Madera, and Old Larkspur, was granted to John Reed (Irish) in 1834. The Reed family held on to much of this ranch until World War II, with the last descendent, Clotilda Reed, owning more than 2,000 acres of Tiburon until she died in 1940.

The 56,807 acres of the Nicaso grant include Nicasio, the east shore of the Tomales Bay, part of Novato, and vast ranch lands. Although this land was originally promised to the Miwok tribes, there were several swindles resulting in the grant going to De La Guerra (Spanish) and John Cooper (Irish). They broke the land into large parcels and sold it all by 1851. The Miwoks received the right to live on about 30 acres to hunt and fish on the ranch but not raise cattle.


George M. Dodge

George M. Dodge was an engineer and cartographer active in northern California in the late 19th-century. Although detailed historical records about him are limited, his work, especially in surveying and mapping Marin County, indicates his role in the development of the area during that time.

In addition to creating a detailed survey of Marin County, Dodge was involved in local infrastructure projects, such as the Mount Tamalpais railway built in 1898.

His work in creating a wall map of Marin County was particularly important as it provided one of the most detailed and influential surveys of the county during that era, showcasing the geography, settlement patterns, and the remnants of Mexican land grants. Such maps were crucial for understanding land ownership, planning development, and historical documentation.

Condition Description

Original dowels. Expertly cleaned and backed on Japanese tissue paper for long-term stability and preservation. Heavy varnish removed. Noticeable cracks and chips remain where the upper and lower dowels were rolled. Lightening along vertical centerfold.


Vogdes, p. 221.