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Number: 3651
Continent: Africa
Region: East
Place Names: Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi
Year of Origin: 1910
Title: DEUTSCH - OSTAFRIKA. Neubearbeitung von Max Moisel.
Language: German
Publish Origin: Berlin
Height: 91.5
Width: 70.5
Units: centimeters
Size Class.: Large
Scale: 1 : 2,000,000
Color Type: Outline Color
Click for high-resolution zoomable image
Cartographer: Max Moisel
Publisher: Ernst Vohsen
Dietrich Reimer
Other Contributors: Paul Sprigade
Northernmost Latitude: 1.0
Southernmost Latitude: -15.1
Westernmost Longitude: 28.9
Easternmost Longitude: 42.3
Measurement Notes: on map
Notes: [SOURCE PAHOR] dissected into 30 sections and mounted upon original linen, with contemporary publisher's advertisements pasted to verso (map clean, crisp and bright with lovely colours, just a few light spots and some oxidization to linen backing), 101 x 76.5 cm (40 x 30 inches). Rare, the seminal official map of German East Africa (modern mainland Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi) drafted by May Moisel, Germany's chief colonial cartographer; predicated upon the best surveys, depicting the country in great detail, labelling the territories of the indigenous peoples, the locations of natural resources and the progress of railways, amongst a wealth of other information; the present edition updated to 1910. This is a stellar example of the rare official map of Deutsch-Ostafrika (German East Africa), the German colony that consisted of modern-day mainland Tanzania (Tanganyika), Rwanda and Burundi. It was drafted from the best and most recent sources by Max Moisel, who was the leading cartographer of Germany's colonies, heading a special state-sponsored department for that purpose at the prestigious Berlin publishing firm of Dietrich Reimer. The map is by far and way the best general map of German East Africa, and is very rare on the market, this being the first example we have encountered in our nearly 14 years of business in Germany. During the colonial 'scramble for Africa' Germany showed a particular interest in the stunningly beautiful and mineral rich section of East Africa that today makes up mainland Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi; a region that had been largely overlooked by the other great powers. In 1884 the Deutsch-Ostafrikanische Gesellschaft (German East Africa Company) was founded to colonize and exploit the region, acquiring rights from local rulers to lands on the coast by Dar es Salaam. The European powers recognized Germany's claim to the region at the Berlin Conference (1885), and the German Government formally entrusted the colony to the the Gesellschalft. However, the company was not able to effectively contain local unrest, and in 1890, Deutsch-Ostafrika became a crown colony, with the Gesellschaft retaining a supporting, commercial role. The colony contained immense natural resources, although continued local opposition; the climate, which was unhealthy to Europeans; and the region's rugged topography made governance difficult. As such, while Deutsch-Ostafrika was universally viewed to be Germany's most intrinsically valuable African colony, it was the least developed. That being said, notable achievements in infrastructure, mining and agrarian affairs were achieved. The colony remained under German control until World War I, when it was seized by British forces, this despite the fact that General Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck, the German commander in East and Southern Africa, had largely bettered his Entente opponents. At the Versailles Conference (1919), Germany lost all her colonies, and the territory of German East Africa was divided between Britain (which gained mainland Tanzania, or Tanganyika) and Belgium (which acquired Rwanda and Burundi). The present map depicts the entire territory of German East Africa, and its neighbouring territories to an ample scale of 1:2,000,000. The lands of the various colonial powers in the region are colour coded; German East Africa is coloured in dark pink; British lands are coloured in green (Kenya, Rhodesia & Nyasaland, and the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba); Portuguese Mozambique in yellow; while the Belgian Congo is coloured purple. The topography of Deutsche-Ostafrika is captured with great detail and accuracy, predicated upon systematic surveys sponsored in the late 1890s by the German Colonial Ministry. Elevation is shown through delicate shading, with spot heights given in metres (including the famous peaks of Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru). Lakes, swamps and rivers are depicted, indicating where bodies of water are dry for part of the year. The map also labels every city, town and village of any import. Notably, the map labels the territories of the region?s native peoples, for instance the lands of the ?Massai? (Maasai) appear in the northeast. The colony is shown divided into 22 districts, corresponding to the numerals labelling their names in the bottom margin. In the lower-right corner is the ?Erkl?ungen? (Explanations), identifying the signs used throughout the map to denote district seats and regional military headquarters; the locations of post, telegraph and customs offices; the placement of Protestant and Catholic missions; as well as the routes of major roads, telegraph lines, underwater telegraph cables, and railways (both already built and projected). In the upper-right corner of the map is a table ?Nutzbare Bodensch?ze? (Usable Mineral Resources) which exlpains the symbols used throughout to label the locations of areas of mineral exploration; as well as deposits of gold (and whether placer or imbedded); iron ore; copper; graphite; anthracite coal; lignite; bitumen; mica; granite; agate; chalk; kaolin; as well as hot springs. These symbols reveal the land to be one of great natural bounty. The inset map in the lower-left corner, ?Die Südhälfte von Afrika, zur Übersicht der Beziehungen Deutsch-Ostafrikas zu den übrigen deutsch-afrikanischen Kolonien?, depicts south and central Africa and reveals the German colonial ambitions on the continent in their greater context. In addition to Deutsch-Ostafrika, the other German colonies include Deutsch S?west-Afrika (Namibia) and Kamerum (Cameroon); the German colony of Togoland is located off the map. This map powerfully illustrates how Germany and Britain came to blows in Africa, as the British territories seem to encroach upon the German colonies form almost all directions, while the presence of Deutsche-Ostafrika severed the otherwise contiguous nature of the British colonies, so interrupting Cecil Rhodes?s dream of an All-British Cape to Cairo Railway. The present map was issued as the official map of Deutsch-Ostafrika in several continually updated editions. However, all the editions are undated, and there is never an explicit written indication of the different issues on the maps themselves. The first issue of the map was likely published around 1900, with successive states appearing until the eve of World War I. The issues can only be discerned by the differences in details with respect the placement of mineral discoveries and the progress of railway construction, which are shown differently on each issue. The present issue of the map was, by all indications, published in 1910, as it captures the state of the constantly developing railway system as it was in that year. Construction of the Ostafrikanische Eisenbahngesellschaft (East African Railway Company) (OAEG) line, a railway that was to run from the colonial capital Dar es Salaam across the country to Lake Tanganyika, was commenced in 1904. By January 1, 1910, the line was opened as far west as Kilossa; the present map shows the line as extending just past that point, indicating that the map is current as of perhaps the middle of 1910. The railway would be completed to Kigoma on Lake Tanganyika by February 1914, on the eve of WWI. Another hint as to the rough dating of the present example of the map is the presence of a beautiful decorative advertisement on one of the map?s back panels for Dietrich Reimer's Mitteilungen für Ansiedler, Farmer, Tropenpflanzer, Kolonisten, Forschungsreisende, Kaufleute und Kolonialfreunde, a fantastic periodical produced especially for Germans operating in the colonies, that was issued between 1907 and 1914. For comparison, please see a link to an earlier (1903) edition of the map, courtesy of the Biblioth?ue nationale de France: A Note on Rarity While we can trace several examples of the map, in its various editions held by institutions, including the Staatsbibliotheck Berlin; ?terreichische Nationalbibliothek; Biblioth?ue nationale de France; Beinecke Library (Yale University); and the British Library, all editions of map are very rare on the market; we cannot trace any sales records from the last generation. Max Moisel and the Cartography of Germany?s Colonies Germany, a country that became unified only in 1871, did not possess any overseas colonies prior to the 1880s. However, Germany possessed about the most technically sophisticated land surveying and map publishing capabilities in the world. Moreover, many Germans, either on their own commercial initiative, or working for foreign governments, had made many of the most important maps of overseas lands of the 18th and 19th Centuries. Indeed, many of the seminal scientific maps of the Middle East, South Africa, Indonesia, Latin America and the United States were made by German cartographers. In the 1880s, Germany acquired a number of colonies, including German East Africa, German Southwest Africa, Togoland, Cameroon, Eastern New Guinea, and the Caroline Islands; many of these lands were hitherto not well mapped. New surveys needed to be commissioned and the resulting maps edited and published. In the early years of their colonial era, the German State Colonial Office, the Reichs-Kolonialamt, had to decide whether to set up its own mapmaking agency (expensive and technically difficult) or to find a more innovative and easier approach. The firm of Dietrich Reimer (founded in 1845) in Berlin, was one of the world?s most esteemed cartographic publishing houses, long associated with Heinrich Kiepert, the foremost modern cartographer of Turkey and the Middle East. Since 1891, the firm was led by Ernst Vohsen, an old Africa hand who was a director of the Deutsch-Ostafrikanische Gesellschaft. Under Vohsen?s influence the Reichs-Kolonialamt increasingly turned to the Reimer firm to fulfil its map drafting and publishing commissions. Enter Max Moisel (1869 - 1920), a cartographer who had joined the Reimer firm in 1888. Moisel was so exceedingly gifted at analysing and editing sources as they arrived from the field, sorting the ?wheat form the chaff?, and drafting finished maps, that he brought the firm?s colonial mapping up to an entirely new level of excellence. Working closely with his long-time colleague Paul Sprigade (1863 - 1928), he was increasingly given ever more important colonial commissions and in 1895 was made the editor of the Kleinen Deutschen Kolonialatlas, a continually updated project to issue pocket atlases of the German colonies. He was also instrumental in the production of the Karte von Deutche-Ostafriaka, a monumental survey of the colony, published in a series of 29 sheets (Berlin: Reimer, 1895-7), which was a major source for the present map. In 1899, in good part due to Vohsen?s lobbying and Moisel and Sprigade?s talent, the Reichs-Kolonialamt decided upon a permanent solution towards the matter of their cartographic needs. They agreed to create the Kolonial-kartographischen Institut, that would operate as part of the Reimer firm, working out of the their premises and manned by their employees, but would be funded entirely be the Reichs-Kolonialamt. The Institut would be given a monopoly on official cartographic work relating the German colonies. Moisel was appointed as the as the first director of the Institut, and with this new support and funding achieved great things. Moisel and Sprigade published the Grosser deutscher Kolonialatlas (1901) and Moisel drafted a number of fine large format maps of individual colonies, such as the present work. In 1908, Moisel travelled to Cameroon, where he learned first-hand about the countryside and the nature of surveying in African frontier environments. This led to the publication of his grand Karte von Kamerun, a massive work on 31 sheets (Berlin: Reimer, 1910). On the eve of the World War I, the Kolonial-kartographischen Institut employed over 60 mapmakers and support staff, and played a major role in informing the German military effort in Africa, which in the case of southern Africa theatre was (unlike the general conflict) quite successful. Nevertheless, Germany lost the war and with it all her colonies, so compelling the Institut to close in 1920. Sadly, Moisel died few months later. Interestingly, Moisel and the Institut?s cartography had an enduring legacy, although perhaps not the one that the mapmakers would have intended. While the German maps served as the basis for the cartography adopted by the former German colonies new masters (often the British), it was the revival of the maps at the beginning of the World War II that was most striking. In 1940, Hitler seriously considered regaining the former German colonies, and he charged the Reichsamts für Landesaufnahme (the German Surveying Office) with issuing revised editions of Moisel and Sprigade?s maps (including the present map of Deutsche-Ostafrika), with the implication that these lands were still rightly German territory, illegally occupied by the foreign powers. However, the Third Reich soon became caught up in events in Europe and abandoned the notion. [At bottom margin there is an index of German offical districts.]..... There is a rare British rendering of this map used for the British against German forces in World War I conflict in East Africa.....[GREAT BRITAIN. GEOGRAPHICAL SECTION, GENERAL STAFF, WAR OFFICE.] TANZANIA / RWANDA / BURUNDI - WORLD WAR I IN EAST AFRICA: German East Africa. Scale 1:2,000,000 or 1.014 Inches = 32 Miles. Southampton, England: Ordnance Survey Office, 1914. Photolithographic print, with contemporary manuscript additions in coloured crayon and red and black pen, mounted upon original linen, curiously with the panels of an Italian map of Dalmatia mounted to verso (Good, some wear and toning along old folds, one panel toned, a few small stains, a tiny piece of blank margin excised in lower left corner), 80.5 x 75.5 cm (31.5 x 29.5 inches). A seemingly unrecorded special ?emergency? issue of Max Moisel?s groundbreaking map of Deutsch-Ostafrika (today?s mainland Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi), issued in haste by British War Office immediately following the outbreak of World War I, whereupon East Africa became a surprisingly intense conflict theatre; Gen Smuts vs. Lettow-Vorbeck. References: [Re: the Present 1910 edition:] Duke University (Rubenstein Library): G8440 1910 .M657 c.1. Cf. [Re: Other editions:] Biblioth?ue nationale de France, d?artement Cartes et plans, GE C-3111; Beinecke Library (Yale University): 634 1905; British Library: Cartographic Items Maps 66920.(9.) / OCLC: 557512327; [Re: Background:] Rudolf Hafeneder, ? Deutsche Kolonialkartographie 1884-1919, PhD. Dissertation, Universit? der Bundeswehr M?chen (2008).
Last updated: Nov 19, 2020