Title Insurance and Trust Company Los Angeles

Rare Map Old Spanish and Mexican Ranchos of Los Angeles County

The Old Spanish and Mexican Ranchos of Los Angeles County

DESCRIPTION: "The Old Spanish and Mexican Ranchos of Los Angeles County" is apparently the first advertising map of that title published by the Title Insurance and Trust Company of Los Angeles, just one year after the firm was incorporated in 1928. Compared to later editions this earliest 1929 edition appears as though it was produced more quickly, fitting for a company that was just beginning to take advertising seriously. The 1929 edition is smaller, more colorful, and much less elaborately executed than two later maps by the same name that the firm published in 1930 and 1937.

Rare. Not found in Rumsey or WorldCat.

Compared to the 1930 edition the 1929 edition lacks the elaborate compass rose and distance scale, the Spanish missions are drawn more simply and they lack the founding dates found in the 1930 edition. In the 1930 edition the artist has labeled public lands as such, and has filled the Pacific Ocean with a sailing ship, flying fish, and sea monsters, familiar scenes that cartographers have used for hundreds of years.

Title Insurance Building. 433 So. Spring Street. Los Angeles. Copyright 1929.

The Title Insurance and Trust Company Los Angeles (T.I.) was inccorporated in December, 1893. The aim of the new company was to
"... examine public records; to acquire abstract plants; to prepare and issue policies of insurance on titles to real estate; to do a general trust business, including the acting as administrator, executor and guardian; to acquire, hold and deal in the shares of stock of other corporations; and to act as agent or trustee in any capacity employed. (1)"

T.I. grew internally and through acquisitions and by 1923 nearly 200,000 deeds were recorded in Los Angeles County, with continued growth for the rest of the decade. Business was so strong that in 1927-28 the company built and moved to a 10 floor office building at the west side of Spring Street between Fourth and Fifth.

At the end of 1928 T.I. hired Charles Little as its first advertising manager. "Little brought in an artist to draw a multi-colored map of the Spanish-Mexican ranches of Los Angeles County; printed and widely-circulated, it hung on walls all over the region, cementing the public's linkage of T.I. with southern California history. (1)" During 1928-1929 other efforts at promoting the business included public talks to service clubs on "the Romance of California Land Titles", and a series of articles authored by Palmer Conner, a company spokesperson, on "The Romance of the Ranchos".

(1) Grenier, Judson A. “Growing Together for a Century: Southern California and the Title Insurance and Trust Company.” Southern California Quarterly, vol. 75, no. 3/4, 1993, pp. 351–439. JSTOR, https://doi.org/10.2307/41171685. Accessed 26 Mar. 2024.

CREATOR: Title Insurance and Trust Company Los Angeles



BODY OF WATER: Pacific Ocean

CONDITION: Good.  Generally clean, bright, and intact. Old tape repairs from the verso to close fold separations and one tear at right edge below the Mojave Desert. A few stains.

COLORING: Lithographed color.


SIZE: 9 " x 10 "


PRICE: $1350


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