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A Very Elegant, Art Deco Floor Globe
One of the Finest Floor Globes Produced in First Half of the 20th Century
Terrestrial Library Globe/ Antarctica.
RAND MCNALLY & COMPANY [Chicago, c. 1930]
Rand McNally 18” Globe.
Four-legged wooden stand, 39 inches high; globe 18 inches diameter. Lightly toned; few small scuffs or abrasions restored with somewhat larger repair west of Africa; some minor cracks at equator, still very good overall.
A beautifully presented floor globe, raised on an Art Deco walnut stand. A nearly identical globe is shown in Rand McNally catalog 337, dated 1937, called The Drake, the finest 18-inch globe then offered by Rand McNally. According to the catalog, “the simplicity and freedom from unnecessary ornamentation to this model represents the best in modern furniture design.” The stand has a Louis XVI “Gout-Grec” transitional influence in the form of the tapered leg but is decidedly Art Deco overall. The horizon band has a figured exotic wood frieze decorated with roundels above the legs, rotating 360 degrees on a bulbous wooden meridian holder resting on a medial cross stretcher. The four tapered down-swept legs end in ebonized feet with cross-hatched decoration. Oceans are blue, now faded to green, geographic entities generally cream color, now beige.
The globe is interesting in a geo-political sense in reflecting a still pervasive European colonial dominance in many areas, which would soon begin to greatly diminish. Much of Africa on the globe is named and delimited according to areas claimed by various European powers. India is prominently called “British India.” The globe also reflects the unresolved political nature of the Antarctic at the time. Delineated on it are claims, some of them overlapping, to various Antarctic areas made by Australia, New Zealand (the Ross Dependency), the Falkland Islands, and the United States, called the Byrd-Ellsworth Sector. An area called “Shakleton Shelf Ice” is also noted. Numerous steamship routes, shown in red and identified, can be seen particularly in the vicinity Australia and throughout southern Asia.
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