MEDIA
An Eye-Draught of the Mammoth Cave
Original Author: C. W. Short for William Short
Created: ca. 1787–1826
Medium: Pen-and-ink and wash drawing

An Eye-Draught of the Mammoth Cave, in Warren County. [Ky]

A foldout drawing titled An Eye-Draught of the Mammoth Cave, in Warren County [Ky], maps the dimensions of, minerals found in, and locations of springs in Mammoth Cave in southern Kentucky. The diagram pinpoints the whereabouts of large deposits of saltpetre, a naturally occurring nitrate crucial for the production of gunpowder. At an unknown date, this hand-drawn sketch was tipped into Thomas Jefferson's copy of the 1787 London edition of his Notes on the State of Virginia. (Jefferson may have inserted the illustration himself.) An engraved version of the drawing was incorporated into the 1853 edition of Notes brought to press in Richmond by Jefferson's grandson and executor, Thomas Jefferson Randolph.

Citation: Notes on the State of Virginia. A 1787 .J45. Special Collections, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.

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