Wonderful pictorial map of Beijing


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SKU: NL-00113 Categories: ,
Date: ca. 1930
Place: Tientsin, China
Dimensions: 57.5 x 47.5 cm (22.75 x 18.75 in)
Condition Rating: VG
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Pictorial street map of the inner city of Beijing covering three areas: Tartar City, Imperial City (including the Forbidden City) and Chinese City. The map is decorated with small illustrations of landmark buildings and black silhouettes of workers, pedestrians and animals. Essentially a tourist map since it includes sightseeing attractions, rail station, hotels etc. It also depicts the Legation Quarter, the area where foreign legations were located between 1861 and 1959.

The title and imprint from paper slipcover of map, not present here. Imprint date based on the first use of ‘Peiping’ in 1928 and the representation of the German Legation by the black, red, and gold Reichsbanner flag which was banned in 1933. Another edition of the map, likely slightly later, is titled ‘Peking’ instead of ‘Peiping.’ ‘Beijing’ was not adopted as an international standard of spelling until 1979.

The publisher’s name is presented within the compass rose in the upper right corner; copyright by Peiyang Press on banner in lower left and below, in a yellow square, drawn by John Kirk Sewall.

OCLC/WorldCat lists three examples, at the University of Michigan, the University of Victoria (British Columbia, Canada), and the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek in Germany.

Verso Text: Blank


John Kirk Sewall

John Kirk Sewall was an American illustrator who was active in the first half of the 19th century, creating at least two maps of Beijing, as well as illustrating the popular cookbook, Corinne Lamb’s The Chinese Festive Board (1935).

Peiyang Press

Peiyang Press printed maps, books, and views aimed at Western audiences in China. The company was founded in 1924, with offices in Tianjin and Beijing, and operated until the Communist Revolution in 1949.

Condition Description

Old folds, pinholes in corners, very good overall.


Rumsey 8220.000.