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Description found in Archives

The River St. John [cartographic material] / 


Feby. 14, 1779

Place of creation



Publish'd according to Act of Parliament by J.F.W. Des Barres, Esqr.

1 map: hand col. ; 50 x 70 cm on sheet 62 x 82 cm.
Cartographic material
90: Open
Original can be viewed in the presence o
f an early cartographic archivist
Cartographic material
Microfiche NMC27970
90: Open
Cartographic material
Microfiche NMC26189
90: Open
Item no. (creator)
Alexander E. MacDonald Canadiana Collection #658e
Archival reference no.
Other accession no.
80101/245 CA

Terms of use

Credit Library and Archives Canada.
Copyright expired.

Biography / Administrative history

Surveyor and Lieutenant Governor.

Joseph Frederick Wallet DesBarres (originally Joseph-Frédéric Vallet DesBarres) (1721-1824) was born in November 1721, either in Basel, Switzerland, or in Paris. He was a topographical artists, military engineer, surveyor and map-maker. He was the eldest child of Joseph-Léonard Vallet Des Barres, a Huguenot from the Montbéliard region of France, and Anne-Catherine Cuvier. He was educated in Basel and then at the Royal Military College, Woolwich, England. He entered the British army and served in america during Seven Years' War, taking part in actions at Ticonderoga, Louisbourg and Quebec campaigns, DesBarres undertook surveys of Nova Scotia and Cape Breton, 1763-1773, and between 1774 and 1784 published his fine collection of charts as the Atlantic Neptune published for the use of the Royal Navy of Great Britain, in 4 volumes.

He was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Cape Breton in 1784 and removed from office in 1787. Later, he served as Lieutenant Governor of Prince Edward Island, 1804-1812. He died at Halifax, Nova Scotia, on 27 October 1824, just one month short of 103.

Additional information

Bathymetry indicated by soundings; shoals stippled; relief shown by shading and hachures.

Prime meridian: Greenwich.

Includes inset: The entrance of the River St. John.

From: The Atlantic Neptune, published for the use of the royal navy of Great Britain, by Joseph F. W. Des Barres, under the direction of the right hon'ble, the Lords Commisioners of the admirality. London

Custodial history
Part of the Alexander E. MacDonald Canadian Collection purchased by the Public Archives of Canada in 1981.

Related materials
For detailed description see G1107.C6P5 D47 1784 v. 1 pt. 2 #16 1779 (AMICUS No. 32990481). For other states and editions see: Carto - G1107.C6P5 D46 1779 v. 1 #12 1776 - H2 (AMICUS No. 32990449) ; Carto - G1107.C6P5 D47 1784 v. 1 pt. 2 #16 1780 Plate (AMICUS No. 32990473) ; Carto - G1107.C6P5 D47 1784 v. 1 pt. 2 #16 1776 - copy 1 - H2 ; Carto - G1107.C6P5 D47 1784 v. 1 pt. 2 #16 1776 - copy 2 - H2 (NMC 134383 (c. 2)(AMICUS No. 32990480) ; Carto - G1107.C6P5 D47 1784 v. 1 pt. 2 #16 1780 - copy 1 - H2 ; Carto - G1107.C6P5 D47 1784 v. 1 pt. 2 #16 1780 - copy 2 - H2 (NMC 27970 (+c) (c. 2) (AMICUS No. 32990482)

Cartographic math data
Scale [ca. 1:29 500] (W 66°12'--W 65°54'/N 45°18'--N 45°6')

Citation / reference note
Layng, Theodore E. Des Barres collection, Map Division, Public Archives of Canada, p. 44 #16[d].
Henry Newton Stevens collection of the Atlantic Neptune, v. 1 #13c; v. 2, p. 26, state 4.
Kershaw, Entry 749, state 5
Sellers and Van Ee, Entry 268

Subject heading

1. New Brunswick - Saint John River Estury - Nautical charts - Early works, 1751-1800.
2. New Brunswick - Saint John River Estury - Views - Early works, 1751-1800.