LAND SURVEYING CE 362
LETTERING FIELDBOOKS The following is the lettering style to be used in all fieldbooks.
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
TYPES OF LEGAL SURVEYS 1. MORTGAGE INSPECTION:
Process: 1. Check latest deeds to property. 2. Check approx. property line location & location of parcel within a block. 3. Examine for apparent encroachments by fences, driveways, & structures. 4. Locate all permanent structures. 5. Show platted easements, ROW, & building lines. 6. Prepare drawing & report (Signed and Sealed by PLS)
TYPES OF LEGAL SURVEYS 2. LAND TITLE SURVEYS (ALTA):
Process: 1. Acquire copies of tract deed & all abutting tracts. 2. Establish location of property lines on the ground & monument. 3. Check for encroachments, ROW, & easements. 4. Determine conformity to zoning regulations. 5. Complete Surveyor’s Report Form.
TYPES OF LEGAL SURVEYS ď Ž
3. Boundary Surveys 1. Retracement Rural 2. Retracement Subdivision 3. Subdivision
Must follow in the footsteps of previous Surveyor!
U.S. Rectangular System Structure
Meridians & Baselines:
35 principal meridians and 32 baselines
Meridian – line runs straight N-S Baseline – line perpendicular to meridian
Principal Meridian – generally established 1st.
3 govern land in Illinois
2nd - 86°28’00” W long. 3rd - 89°10’15” W 4th - 90°28’45” W
Baselines run @ 90° to P.M.
Monumented and latitude north of equator. 2 BL in IL
BL for 2nd and 3rd P.M. are the same - 38°28’20”N BL for 4th P.M. - 40°00’30”N
Point of intersection (BL&PM) often called Cardinal Point.
E-W lines parallel to baseline at intervals of 24 miles N and S of the baseline.
Lines running N-S and 24 miles each side of P.M.
This 24 mile square is a Quadrangle and contains 16 Townships
Township lines are E-W lines 6 miles apart north or south of the baseline. Range lines are N-S lines 6 miles apart east or west of the principal meridian. This 6 mile square is called the Township
Townships are divided into 36 – 1 mile square sections.
Numbering system called boustrophedonically
Correction Lines (Standards of Parallel)
Each acts as a new Baseline for townships to the North. Due to the convergence of meridians, compensation is needed.
B.L.M. Rules 1.
Boundaries of the public lands, when approved & accepted are unchangeable. Original townships, section, and ¼ section corners must stand as the true corners which they were intended to represent whether in the place shown by field notes or not. ¼, ¼ section corners not established in original surveys shall be placed on line connecting section & ¼ corner & midway between, except in the north and west ½ mile of townships & fractional sections.
B.L.M. Rules 4.
Center lines of a section are to be straight, running from ¼ corner to ¼ corner with center of section at the intersection. In a fractional section where no opposite corresponding ¼ corner has been or can be established, the center line must be run from proper ¼ corner as nearly cardinal as parallelism with sectional boundaries allow.
Principles of Process 1.
Original surveys create boundaries. They must be considered in any conveyance made for the purpose of identifying land on the ground prior to or as a consideration of a conveyance. Resurveys of original surveys are for the purpose of relocating the original surveyorâ€™s lines in the same position as they were originally marked and thus they can only be conducted by the entity that created the original boundaries. A subsequent surveyor who follows after the original surveyor, except one who may be in privity with the original surveyor, only conducts a retracement, and such it is open to collateral attack.
Principles of Process 4.
Original surveys which divide land are or may be regulated by statute or other legislative action, but once conveyance is made according to the land division, the location of the land parcels described is to be interpreted by the courts. The boundary surveyor has no judicial authority when resurveying or retracing boundaries for clients. The force of the property surveyorâ€™s authority is derived from reputation and respect. Judicial authority can only be granted by and through the courts.
Principles of Process 6.
The surveyor must uncover sufficient facts about the property being retraced: in this sense the surveyor becomes a fact finder. The surveyor must then reach conclusions from the facts; it is the quality of these conclusions that is the mark of a professional.
Principles of Process As a minimum, a boundary surveyor who decides to make a survey or a retracement from a written conveyance assumes the responsibility of obtaining copies of:
2. 3. 4. 5.
Necessary adjoiner conveyances called for in the legal description furnished. All maps called for. Pertinent recorded adjoining surveys. Public agency maps that are available. In GLO states, government township plats and field notes.
Principles of Process 8.
The final decision of which documents should be used to locate a parcel should be made by the surveyor. The boundary surveyor does not decide who owns land or rights in land. The surveyorâ€™s responsibility is only to locate land boundaries and, except for special agreements with respect to unwritten rights, only to locate land in accordance with written documents.
Principles of Process 10.
Surveyors should never agree to locate all existing easements relating to or affecting property; the surveyor should merely agree to locate those easements in accordance with furnished descriptions and those that are visible or of public record. In a description, no one corner, whether monumented or not, is superior to any other corner. Each has equal survey and legal weight in retracing a description.
Principles of Process 13.
The surveyor should hunt and search in the field until the best available evidence is found on which to base the boundary retracement survey. Time should not be a consideration. Possession may memorialize original survey lines and as such may be the best or worst evidence of original lines.
Principles of Process 12.
Except where a senior right is interfered with, record or legal monuments, if called for in a conveyance and if found undisturbed, indicate the true intent of original parties and as such control.
If called for, monuments that cannot be found or if they are found disturbed, their former position may be identified by competent witness testimony or acceptable physical indicators of boundaries.
Principles of Process 15.
An original monument found undisturbed usually expresses the intent of the parties of the conveyance, fixes the point as between the parties, and as such has no error in position. All restored monuments established by measurement have some error in position. The magnitude of permissible uncertainty of measurements is always determined by a courts interpretation.
Principles of Process 17.
The error of measurement originally permitted when tying original monuments together is independent of the accuracy required to reestablish an original lost monument position. In the absence of the owner specifying an unusually high precision coupled with an accurate survey, itâ€™s presumed that the surveyor will work to that precision consistent with the purpose for which it will be used or the standards of the profession in that locality.
Principles of Process 19.
Every property survey should result in the preparation and delivery of a report or plat, whether or not itâ€™s to be recorded. The surveyor should conduct each survey as if it will ultimately be presented in court.
There are 4 areas of fact finding: 1. 2.
Facts furnished by clients Searching pertinent written records and public records – deeds, adjoining descriptions, maps and old field books. Fieldwork – searching for monuments, locating possession and making measurements. Seeking testimony and information from old residents and other surveyors.
Field Notes 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
Items to include in field notes: Date, name, and address of client. Names of party personnel, position, and duties. Weather conditions and observed temperature. Equipment used (with serial numbers) North arrow with origin of bearing. Description of monuments called for, found, not found and set. Measurements actually made. Corrected distances and angles.
Field Notes 9.
10. 11. 12.
13. 14. 15.
Description of monuments set and ties taken to features. Relation of possession to survey lines. Outline of parcel surveyed (highlighted in pencil). Sketch of parcel staked, showing important features. Oaths of witness evidence (if applicable). Names and addresses of adjoiners, old residents. Reference to any records relied on or called for.
UNITS OF MEASUREMENT
Cubit = 18.92”
Span = 1/2 cubit Palm = 1/6 cubit Digit = 1/24 cubit
Foot = 2/3 cubit, about 12.16” Inch Perch = 16.50’ Chain = 66’
UNITS OF MEASUREMENT
Arpent = 192.50’
1 sq. arpent = .8507 Ac
Exceptions: Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and NW Florida - 1 sq. arpent = .84625 Ac.
Vera = 2.7778’
36 veras = 100.00’
Exceptions: Florida, Mexico, California, Texas
LAND SURVEYING DEVELOPEMENT 1. Started in Egypt 1400 BC to relocate property for 2. 3. 4.
tax purposes long the Nile River. Babylonians – divided circle into 360 ° Greeks – developed diopta Romans – refined surveying
Romans Influence on Surveying
Corpus Agrimensorum Agrimensors Groma Centuria Organized training for surveyors Julius Caesar – founder of surveying profession due to its wide use in military and colonization.
Formal Surveying Instructions ď Ž
Main lines run N-S or E-W
Methods of determining North
Early Surveying in U.S.
Early settlements in colonies was by grants and patents.
Descriptions often ambiguous and far reaching. Prior to revolutionary war most land was in private hands or direct possession of the colony. At end of war all lands owned by England went to respective colony without description. Many of the early surveys consisted of running 2 line on the ground with 3 corners witnessed.
ORIGINAL LAND GRANT WAS 400 MILES WIDE CENTERED ON OLD POINT COMFORT FROM SEA TO SEA. AFTER REVOLUTIONARY WAR 400 AC. TRACTS WERE GIVEN AS PAYMENT TO SOLDIERS. EARLY SURVEYS WERE POOR, RUN WITH COMPASS AND HAD POOR BOUNDARY MARKERS.
CAROLINAS & GEORGIA
SURVEYS WERE POOR OR DID NOT EXIST. CAROLINAS WERE THE FIRST PLACE TO CALL FOR 640 AC. TRACTS.
BETWEEN 1693-1729: NO SURVEYOR ALLOWED TO SURVEY MORE THAN 640 AC. INTO ONE TRACT.
MUCH OF EARLY SETTLEMENT LANDS TAKEN FROM INDIANS. EARLY SURVEY SYSTEM ONE OF THE POOREST WITH RESPECT TO RETRACEMENT. A SYSTEM OF NON-CONNECTED METES & BOUNDS PARCELS AND POSSESSION LINE CLAIMS.
DELAWARE: POOR SURVEYS MASSACHUSETTS: DEVELOPED BY MASSACHUSETTS BAY COLONIES. ORGANIZED THE LAND INTO GRANTS TO PROMOTE THE DEVELOPMENT OF TOWNS. ADDITIONAL GRANTS OF “TOWNSHIPS” – 6 TO 8 MILES SQUARE. IN WHAT IS NOW VERMONT, MUCH OF THE TOWNSHIPS WERE DIVIDED INTO 64 – 360 AC. TRACTS
NEW HAMPSHIRE: EARLY TITLES VERY HARD TO RETRACE. 1870: HITCHCOCK MADE A SURVEY OF ENTIRE STATE - SURVEY IS ONLY FAIR IN ACCURACY, BUT USABLE.
NEW YORK: ( 1883 RESURVEY) MANY DIFFERENT SYSTEMS EXIST, MANY DUE TO PURCHASES MACOMB PURCHASE: IRREGULAR TRACT OF 3.6+ MILLION AC ALONG THE EAST END OF LAKE ONTARIO. BASED UPON A VERY BROAD & GENERAL DESCRIPTION NO FIELD NOTES EXIST, ONLY A BASIC MAP HOLLAND PURCHASE: IN WESTERN NEW YORK, TIED TO THE NORTH LINE OF PENNSYLVANIA. LINES RUN NORTH DIVIDING LAND INTO 6 MILE SQUARE “TOWNSHIPS”, THEN DIVIDED INTO 64 LOTS. SURVEYS MADE BY JOSEPH ELLICOTT STARTING IN 1797. LANDS IN CENTRAL NEW YORK USED FOR MILITARY GRATUITY & DIVIDED INTO 10 MILE SQUARE TRACTS AND THEN INTO 1 MILE SQ.
MARYLAND: ORIGINAL SURVEYS POOR COMMISSIONER OF THE LAND OFFICE DEVELOPED RULES RELATIVE TO SURVEYS OF ORIGINAL LINES, MUST BE FOLLOWED. BOUNDARY DISPUTE WITH PENNSYLVANIA – NORTH LINE.
PENNSYLVANIA: FAMOUS BOUNDARY LINE DUE TO DISPUTE WITH MARYLAND. OVER THE SOUTH BOUNDARY. MASON – DIXON LINE: 39TH PARALLEL – CHARLES MASON & JEREMIAH DIXON ( ROYAL GEOGRAPHERS) SURVEYED FROM 1763 – 1767: 244 MILES MONUMENTED ONLY 2” ERROR IN LATITUDE
EARLY TRACTS POORLY SURVEYED AND IRREGULAR STATE SURVEYED ALL LANDS PATENTED SINCE 1779 & HAVE GOOD RECORDS.
3 Rules Established Governing Relocation in Pennsylvania
Marks or monuments (natural or artificial) on ground are the best evidence of true location. Calls for adjoining tracts of land as boundaries are the next best evidence. Courses and distances as shown on draft of deputy surveyor are the next best evidence, with distance being the weakest.
Most retracement processes follow the â€œJournal of the Engineers Society of Pennsylvaniaâ€? ESTABLISHED BY STATE COURTS
TEXAS: A SEPARATE NATION FOR A PERIOD OF TIME & UPON BECOMING A STATE IT RETAINED ALL RIGHTS TO PUBLIC LANDS. MANY LAND GRANTS EXISTED FROM SPAIN & MEXICO - GRANTS HAD REQUIRED LAND TO BE SURVEYED IN A RECTANGULAR FORMAT, BUT MANY WERE NEVER RUN IN THE FIELD.
AFTER 1879, IT WAS REQUIRED THAT ALL FIELD NOTES INCLUDE CERTIFICATION THAT SURVEY WAS RUN.
KENTUCKY & TENNESSEE: ORIGINALLY PART OF VIRGINIA & CAROLINAS FIRST TOWN CALLED BOONESBOROUGH (DANIAL BOONE) 1776 – KENTUCKY BECAME COUNTY OF VIRGINIA VIRGINIA DID NOT CEDE TO U.S. CLAIMING LAND WAS NEEDED FOR REVOLUTIONARY WAR VETS. VET. LAND GRANTS HAD POOR DESCRIPTIONS, ALSO GRANTS GIVEN TO SETTLERS & LAND SPECULATORS – CAUSED MANY LAND DISPUTES
TENNESSEE HAD SIMILAR PRACTICES AND MUCH THROUGH OCCUPATION
HAWAII: WAS A SOVERIGN POWER OF ITS OWN AND MOST LAND WAS GIVEN IN THE FORM OF GRANTS PRIOR TO BECOMING A U.S. TERRITORY.
OF ALL COLONIAL AREAS, NEW ENGLAND CAME CLOSEST TO DEVELOPING STANDARD METHODS OF SURVEYING & LAND GRANTS
U.S. PUBLIC LAND SYSTEM IT IS NECESSARY FOR THE SURVEYOR DOING RETRACEMENT TO KNOW & UNDERSTAND THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE USPLSS TO ALLOW THEM TO “FOLLOW IN THE FOOTSTEPS”. U.S. CONGRESS RESOLUTIONS: SEPT., 1780 – COLONIAL STATES ASKED TO CEDE WESTERN HOLDINGS TO FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OCT., 1780 – RECOMMENDATION THAT CEDED TERRITORY BE FORMED INTO STATES NOV., 1780 – RECOMMENDATION THAT CEDED LAND BE OPENED FOR SETTLEMENT & FORMED INTO STATES WITH NO STATE EXCEEDING 130 SQUARE MILES. - LAND SHOULD BE LAID OUT IN 6 MILE SQUARE TOWNSHIPS
U.S. WAS IN DESPERATE NEED OF FUNDS AND HAD AN ABUNDANCE OF LAND. - RAISE MONEY AND ENCOURAGE SETTLEMENT TO PROTECT HOLDING FROM BRITISH AND AMERICAN INDIANS. CONGRESSIONAL AGREEMENT TO DIVIDE THE NORTHWEST TERRITORY INTO NO MORE THAN 5 STATES – OHIO, INDIANA, ILLINOIS, MICHIGAN & WISCONSIN.
1784: THOMAS JEFFERSON HEADED COMMITTEE TO DEVELOP PLANS FOR USPLSS & IS GENERALLY CREDITED FOR IT. - RUFUS PUTNAM PROVIDED MUCH IMPORTANT IMPUT. - ORIGINAL PROPOSAL TO DIVIDE LAND INTO SQUARES BASED UPON THE NAUTICAL MILE. - SECOND PROPOSAL TO DEVELOP INTO TOWNSHIPS 7 MILES SQUARE WITH 49 – 640 AC. TRACTS
An Ordinance for Ascertaining the Mode of Locating & Disposing of Lands in the Western Territory. May 20, 1785 1.
Position of Geographer of United States established to direct surveys. Land divided into townships 6 mi. square by lines run due N-S and other lines crossing at right angles. No allowance for convergence. Originally N-S lines were true meridians, after May 1786, they were allowed to run on magnetic meridians.
Ordinance of 1785 3.
First line to be N-S starting at Ohio River at a point due north from the west end of the south boundary of Penn. (Ellicottâ€™s P.M.) and the E-W line starts at the same point and runs west across territory (Geographerâ€™s line). Townships and fractions to be numbered from south to north always starting with number 1 at the Ohio River. Ranges to be numbered westward from the P.M.
Ordinance of 1785 6.
Townships to be divided into 36 lots one mile square. Numbered 1 @ SE Cor. and progressing south to north. External boundaries of township marked every mile. Lots not surveyed in field. 1. 2.
No specifications as to equipment, accuracy or procedures. 2 areas of Ohio surveyed under this ordinance 1. 2.
Seven Ranges (eastern Ohio) 1785-1789 Western Ohio 1802
No other rectangular surveys between 1789-1796 and as a result six types of survey methods exist in Ohio and parts not on PLSS.
Ordinance of 1788 1.
Provided that township lines be exactly shown on a plat. Must include all mines, salt licks, mill seats, watercourses, mountains and other important items to be noted. Quality of the land was also to be noted. Did not change process, but made record keeping requirements more specific. Plats and field notes required to be submitted.
Land Act of May 18, 1796 1.
5 Major Provisions Surveyor General replaced Geographer of the U.S. (he was to employ deputy surveyors to survey the lands) Lands to be divided into townships six miles square with line run due north/south and others crossing at right angles with no allowance for convergence. Alternate section lines were to be run in alternate townships. Thus monuments now exist around a 2 mile square tract with monuments set every mile along these lines. Every other township still not subdivided. Sections numbered as today (boustrophedonically). Records and plats are to be submitted.
Land Act of June 1, 1796 Provided for special 5 mile square townships with monuments set at 2 Â˝ mile intervals: used in 1. U.S. Military District 2. Connecticut Western Reserve 3. Society of United Brethren all in Ohio
Land Act of March 1, 1800 Corners regularly set by original government surveyors in the field are to be held as the true corners even if later surveys show they had been placed incorrectly, all other provisions remain the same.
Land Act of May 10, 1800 All discrepancies due to convergence and errors would be placed in the north and west tier of sections in a township. All section lines to be run in the field. Monuments to be set every ½ mile on the north and south sides of the section, no provision for ¼ corners on the east and west side.
Land Act of March 3, 1803 Provided for disposal of lands south of Tennessee; provided for the appointment of a â€œSURVEYORâ€? (with the same powers as Surveyor General) for the area northwest of the Ohio River.
Land Act of February 11, 1805 Last of the important amendments of Public Land Survey System and related to Illinois, Indiana, and other states surveyed later. 1. Provided for completion of townships (alternate sections in alternate townships) from Act of 1796. 2. Provided for subdivision of Â˝ sections purchased prior to July 1804 to be surveyed and marked.
Public Land system by 1814 (Review) Land Divided into townships 6mi2 by running lines due north and south and due east and west with no allowance for convergence
2. 3. 4. 5.
Magnetic 1786-1796, astronomic thereafter
Townships divided into 36 parcels, after that sections. Numbering process of townships and ranges established Lines monumented every Â˝ mile All discrepancies due to convergence and error in N & W tier of section
Public Land system by 1814 (Review) 6.
Corners set as original are held as true corners, even if found wrong later. Sections to be divided into quarter sections using straight lines between Âź corners Record of survey kept in field book and plat â€“ must be turned in Variations permitted from established system allowed when necessary Survey procedures not specified; only equipment specified by act was chain; accuracy not prescribed.
General Instructions to Deputy Surveyors Jared Mansfield (1804) 2nd Surveyor General 1. Instruments: 1. 2.
Ritenhouse Compass 2 pole chain of 50 links (must be standardized at Surveyor Generals office)
When prevented from measuring a course, distance is to be obtained by trigonometry or by traverse until true line is returned to. Course of all navigable rivers which bound or pass through the area must be surveyed, width to be determined in several places and tie all points that cross section lines.
General Instructions to Deputy Surveyors 4.
Township and section lines to be run as per Land Acts with all tree hits having 2 notches on each side and all or most of the trees on each side near the line being marked with 2 spots or blazes diagonally (quartering toward the line). Posts erected every ½ mile and mile, if tree exists at the corner it may be used; post to be at least 3” dia. and rise at least 3’ above the ground; all mile posts to have notches cut on 2 sides as distance from the starting point (N & W side); township posts have 6 notches on each side; post to be perpetuated by 2+ bearing trees (blazed facing the post with notch in blaze, tree near post mark with section number, above it T with township number, above it R with range number, ¼ section corners marked with 1/2/S).
General Instructions to Deputy Surveyors 6.
Carefully mark in field book all courses and distances, names and diameter of all corner and bearing trees and trees that fall on line (station or line trees); course and distance for bearing trees; all rivers, creeks, and springs; face of country (terrain) with note as to any special features; note any permanent features over which line passes; soil quality, location of all mines, salt licks, salt springs, and mill seats. All distances are to be level and horizontal.
General Instructions to Deputy Surveyors 8.
Lines measured with 2 perch chain, distances recorded in 4 perch chains; courses and distances placed in left margin of field book with remarks noted to the right; date to be on the close of each days work; notes along with plats to be submitted to Surveyor General. Plat of each township to be neatly prepared on durable paper at a scale of 2â€?=1 mile; plat must show magnetic meridian and variance; exterior lines of plat must show courses and lengths.
Tiffinnâ€™s Instructions: Edward Tiffin â€“ Surveyor General 1815 These are instructions to Deputy Surveyors for Subdividing Townships. 1. When township exterior is complete, begin laying out sections at the SE corner of township, proceed East to West and South to North with excess or deficit falling in the North and West side of the township.
Tiffinn’s Instructions: 2.
Sections to be one mile with ¼ corners set at the ½ mile, if closing a section and distance caries from 80 chains, the distance is to be split, on North and West side of township, establish ¼ corner at ½ mile and measure remainder, if you do not hit township corner, set post at intersection of township line and measure distance to existing corner and note it. Sections must be made to close by running random line on north side and ¼ corner to be set by offset. Fractional townships along rivers, the sections are laid out normally and remainder (fractional sections) are to be carefully measured.
Tiffinnâ€™s Instructions: 5.
North-South lines to be run by true meridian and EastWest lines to be at right angles to these. Greatest error is in chaining, keep attention to chainmen to ensure they chain horizontally and do not lose talley, using only the provided number of pointed talley pins. When section lines cross rivers, obtain direction of course and distance to last corner. In the field you must check chain against one standardized at Standard Chain in the Surveyor Generalâ€™s office. All lines (regular or random) are to be noted at time of running along with amounts of any variance.
Tiffinnâ€™s Instructions: 10.
All courses to be measured with compass corrected for variation. No lines to be run by anyone other than the deputy surveyor, those under immediate supervision of deputy surveyor or authorized by GLO. Deviation from rules will cause forfeiture of contract. Take care that posts are well set and a minimum of 1-2 sight trees are marked every Â˝ mile.
General Instructions for Deputies 1.
Good Rittenhouse Compass with nonius divisions and moveable sights and a 2 pole chain of 50 links both standardized at GLO. When obstructed, continue by offset or traverse to continue line. Courses of all navigable rivers must be accurately surveyed and width taken at points of intersect with township or section lines; distance from intersect to section corners to be noted; make note of all streams that cross lines taking width and course.
General Instructions for Deputies 4.
Lines to be run and marked according to Acts; all trees cut by the line must have two notches on each side and all or most trees near line must be marked with 2 spots or blazes diagonally toward the line. Post to be established at mile and ½ mile (tree may substitute); township corners have 6 notches; all section corners to have notches on 2 sides at distance from beginning point; ¼ corner posts to have no notches; post to be a minimum of 3” diameter and extend a minimum of 3’ above ground; 2 bearing trees to be established; section corner bearing trees to have R#, T#, S#; at ¼ corners bearing trees must have ¼ S.
General Instructions for Deputies 6.
7. 8. 9.
Note course & distance, diameter, name of all bearing trees; note all rivers, creeks, springs, and streams including width and course as they cross lines; note terrain (mountainous, timber type, swamps, ponds, stone quarries, coal beds, peat, other common features (special note of mines, salt licks, salt springs and mill seats). All measurements to be horizontal. Measure with 2 perch chain and record in 4 perch. Course and distance at left margin of field book and description on right; date each close of days work. Plat for each township at 2â€?=1 mile with magnetic variance.
Land Act of February 22, 1817
This provided that sections 2, 5, 20, 23, 30, 33 in all townships could be sold as ¼ sections (160 acres) or ½ ¼ sections (80 acres); division of ¼ section made by line running North - South
Land Act of April 24, 1820
All sections in all townships can be broken into ½ ¼ sections with division north-south; only exception being fractional sections of less than 160 acres must be sold entire; remainder covers land sale requirements (land @ $1.25/Ac min.)
Land Act of May 24, 1824
Allows president to depart from ordinary methods of surveying along rivers, lakes, bayou or watercourse; must be in publics best interest; can cause land to be surveyed into 2 acre wide tracts (Water front) and running back a depth of 40 acres (417.42’ x 8348.41’); must be sold entire.
General Instructions of 1833 Describes Principal Meridian starting points: 1st-Ludlow’s, north from the mouth of the Great Miami River 2nd-Mansfield’s, north through the center of Indiana 3rd-Gallatin’s, north from the mouth of the Ohio through Illinois (confluence of Ohio and Mississippi Rivers) 4th-North from the mouth of the Illinois river through Illinois and Wisconsin territory
Provided Contract Requirements Surveying Instruments: 1. Compass with Nonius and movable sight 2. Surveyors chain-33â€™ with 50 links standardized and handles iron or brass at least Âź inch diameter. 3. Standard chain-used to compare field chain every other day. 4. Talley Rods-iron, 12â€? long with ring and red cloth, set of 11 required. 5. Needle variance due to mineral deposits, but often carelessness.
Variations of Compass ď Ž
Explains line of no variation & declination of needle to line (at time line of no variance ran through western Pennsylvania and New York). To locate Polaris when it is at elongation, the star Alioth (part of big dipper), Polaris and Gamma (Cassiopeia) form a horizontal line, when these stars form a vertical line Polaris is on the Meridian. When Polaris is on the Meridian or at elongation, the variance can most easily be computed, however at elongation is best because of longer observation time due to Polaris movement being vertical.
Running & Marking Lines 1.
Lines run by true meridian (compass adjusted for variance). Lines marked â€“ 2 notches on each side of station trees, line trees, or sight trees; all trees within 10-15 links (6.6â€™9.9â€™) marked with 2 spots or blazes, diagonally or quartering toward the line. If course is obstructed, take offsets or traverse or trig to pass obstacle. No lines run by anyone except Deputy Surveyor authorized by Surveyor General, no marks made by other than Deputy Surveyor or those under immediate direction & in presence.
Exterior Township Lines 1.
Celestial observations to determine variance is made at least every 12 miles on east-west lines and at the end of 18-24 miles on north-south lines. Method: Township line (baseline) established due eastwest across south boundary of tract to be surveyed; monumented every Â˝ mile; from township corners run & monumented range lines, establishing temporary township corner at six miles; at the far corner establish a post and run line east-west; township corners established at intersection points by running line due east or west to close; corner will be the intersection with distance to temporary post measured.
Exterior Township Lines 3.
Surveyor must prepare a map or diagram of lines to a scale of 4 miles = 1 inch. All measurements to be horizontal. Monuments other than standard post: Mound – 2½’ high with 4’ base with angles in direction of cardinal points with stone of 3-4 lbs in center of a few handfuls of charcoal, mound often covered with sod.
Subdivision of Township ď Ž
The east tier of sections run, then return to south line and run next tier with east tier run until the last west tier.
General Instructions to Deputy Surveyors in Illinois & Missouri (1834) Monuments
Post: Standard but 2’ in ground Stone: 7”-8” deep, 12” wide, 14” long and 3” thick. Township corner 5” diameter & section corner 4” diameter. Must be squared off at top. Place stones so corners correspond to cardinal directions Mound: place at least 2 quarts of charcoal at least 3” below surface over which mound is placed. Township corner mounds: 3’ high, 5’ square at base and 2’ square at top. 3 stones (at least 5” square and 3” thick) in top of upper stone at least 3” below surface.
General Instructions of 1843 ď Ž
Required that section corners on west side of township be run and corrected thus eliminating double corners on the west side of township, but double corners still exist on the north side of the township.
General Instructions of 1846 ď Ž
Section corners on both west and north side of a township were to close on existing corners.
Required baselines, meridians, correction and township lines to be run with instrument which operates independently of the magnetic needle.
General Instructions of 1846 (Wisconsin and Iowa) ď Ž
Section corners on both west and north side of a township were to close on existing corners.
Required baselines, meridians, corrections and township lines be run with instrument which operates independently of the magnetic needle.
General Instructions of 1850
Breakdown of a township: run an east-west line between sections 13 & 24 (through center of township) and monument, run east tier of south ½ then east mile of north ½; proceed west one tier at a time.
Manual of Instructions of 1855
When needle variations are noticed, Burt’s improved solar compass (invented 1836) or equivalent must be used. First “Official” manual. Provided for Standard Parallels: every 4 townships (24 miles) north of baseline and every 5 townships (30 miles) south of baseline (5 townships not in later manuals, all at 4 townships). Talley pins (11 in set) up to 14” in length & weighted to drop vertically.
Manual of 1881
Initial point located astronomically. Baseline direction to be tested every 12 miles.
Manual of 1890
Prohibited use of magnetic needle on major lines, can be used only for subdividing township and meander lines if local attraction does not exist.
Manual of 1894
All surveys independent of needle.
Manual of 1902
Initial points to be in conspicuous locations & perpetuated by indestructible monuments.
Manual of 1930
Error of closure requirement introduced: distance to close within 12.5 links/mile & latitude / departure to be 1/452 overall.
Manual of 1947
Corners to be set when meridian established every 40 chains. Require 2 sets of measurements (double chain) & must agree within 14 links/80 chains. Defines a river as 3 chains wide and over as navigable. Line trees to be within 50 links of the line. Requires monuments to be standard iron post 30” long, 2” diameter with brass tablet. 4 bearing trees (one in each section) (if no trees, mounds or stones). Instruments: solar transit & steel tape (2-8 chains). Distances reduced to horizontal and mean sea level.
Manual of 1973 ď Ž ď Ž
Permits use of electronic measurement. Requires greater accuracy (overall closure 1/905).
Ordinance of 1787
1st idea: Boundaries of new states consist of 2 ° of latitude with disregard for natural boundaries.
Changed: Divide N.W. Territory into no more than 5 or less than 3 states.
Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin
Beginning of Surveys of Public Domain
Started in area of eastern Ohio – 7 ranges (2500 square miles). Ohio has as many as 20 different methods of surveying. West boundary of Pennsylvania is the initial reference line with E-W line extended west from Ohio River due north of the SW corner of Pennsylvania. Consists of 6 miles square township with lines in cardinal directions.
Beginning of Surveys of Public Domain
To be done by 13 surveyors (1 from each state). Started in 1784 – extended Mason-Dixon line 24 miles to the SW corner of Pennsylvania.
Then north 63 miles to the Ohio River.
Actual Survey of 7 Ranges started September 1785.
When completed (42 miles) an error of 1500’ S. occurred. Large amount of error due to trying to run true meridian, after that it was done using magnetic compass.
The territory was divided into no fewer than 19 grants to states, veterans, religious or other groups. Boundaries surveyed by Rufus Putnam, but interior done by owners.
Connecticut Reserve – surveyed into squares 5 miles on each side (3.5 million acres). Virginia Veterans – 4 million acres – surveyed by metes and bounds.
Best land went to 1st claimants, later ones had to fit into their tracts. Many were odd shapes with some having well over 100 sides.
Beginning Surveys in Indiana
1st settled by French in 1671, Vincennes 1690, Ft. Wayne 1772. Vincennes – on Wabash River Early French grants had poor descriptions.
Most were 2-4 arpents wide x 40 arpents deep containing 66-132 acres.
1778 – area captured by George Rogers Clark (surveyor) and later ceded by Virginia.
150,000 acres were held by congress for Clark and his men. Clark’s Grant.
Beginning Surveys in Indiana
1st town surveyed in Indiana – Clarkville 1783 Indiana Territory formed July, 1800. 1802 Gov. Harrison ordered survey of Vincennes Tract.
Thomas Freeman ordered to survey exterior boundary .
Done in 1803 with notes returned to Jared Mansfield.
Ebenezer Buckingham, Jr. – hired by Mansfield to survey control for Vincennes Tract.
Beginning Surveys in Indiana
Section 13 of Land Act 1804 – land once surveyed is to be divided into survey districts with a district surveyor for each.
1805 – William Rector – began survey of baseline to control area south of Vincennes Tract.
To be subdivided into sections, ½ sections and ¼ sections.
Baseline was 24 miles south of Buckingham line.
Mansfield was aware of problem of convergence in 1804 and recommended correction lines placed at 6, 12, 18, or 24 mile intervals.
Beginning Surveys in Indiana
Survey of Land North of Vincennes Tract: Ten O’clock – One O’clock Line.
West line of tract was to be distance a man could ride in 2½ days. Indians did not trust compass and used split of shaft shadow between 10 and 1.
Original Survey of West line of Indiana surveyed in 1824, John McDonald.
POB on Wabash River, 46 miles due N. of Vincennes. Reached Lake Michigan at 159 miles, 44 chains.
Surveys in Illinois
No part of the public lands in Illinois were surveyed in full compliance with land acts. Surveyor Generals interpreted land acts, deputy surveyors also allowed leeway in following instructions. Cases exist where up to 4 methods of subdividing sections were used with in a township. Early section corners monumented with posts.
Areas which lack trees-mounds erected with charcoal under.
Many corners found today perpetuated by stones set by district or county surveyors.
Surveys in Illinois
French – 1674 (Starved Rock); 1690 (Cohokia); 1969 (Chicago). Fall of 1805 due to treaty with Indians, Rector ordered to extend system of Indiana and Illinois.
Began survey of auxiliary baseline (36 miles S.) on Oct. 11, 1805. Reached Mississippi River Oct. 24 at 103 miles, 29.5 ch. December 28, 1805 – Rector began Gallatin Meridian (3rd) from a post at confluence of Ohio and Mississippi.
Surveys in Illinois
Rector then began surveying the land along the south boundary of Section 31, Township 6S, Range 1E of the 3rd PM. The Rector brothers caused Collision Zone (3 rd and 2nd meet).
Surveying from West to East between Saline and Wabash Rivers.
R11E, 3rd from T5S to T31N.
Rector has a contract to survey all of the area south of auxiliary Baseline.
Surveys in Illinois
Section6, Act 1810; approved location and survey of town on the Ohio.
1812; Josiah Meigs replaced Mansfield as Surveyor General.
Shawneetown, began January of 1811 by William Dobbins
Gave William and Nelson Rector contracts to survey 47 townships in southern Illinois.
1814; Nelson Rector was attacked and almost killed by Indians near Norris City, IL.
Work to William Rector 1805-1823
Surveys in Illinois
October 1814 – Edward Tiffin, surveyor General February 1815 – Jacob May and Robert Cook set true Cardinal Point.
March 1815 – Tiffin ordered to have 6 million acres of military land surveyed.
Recovered 1973 by L.E. Chapter
2 million each Michigan, Missouri, and Illinois.
4th PM ordered to be run.
Area in Illinois to be between Illinois and Mississippi Rivers with beginning point to be confluence. 3 Surveyors (Enoch Moore, J. Milton Moore, and John Messinger). Found line crossed to E. side of Illinois River and out of area governed. Extended line north until Illinois River crossed and established Cardinal Point, Baseline, and Meridian.
Surveys in Illinois
April 1816 – William Rector “Surveyor of Public Lands in Territories of Illinois and Missouri.”
Had same authority as Surveyor General ¼ lines to be run parallel to sides between which they run. Between 1805 and 1813 received contracts for:
From 1816-1823 issued 713 Township contracts
Auxiliary baseline; 3rd PM to aux. baseline; area south of aux. baseline; private claims in Kaskaskia District; and 34 additional townships. Much of this work was subcontracted, which was made illegal. 213 of these to 5 relatives.
Removed from office in 1824, no one has been given this level of authority again until 1839.
Surveys in Illinois
1817 – 4th PM extended N. to T14 & 15N with standard lines run
1821 – 3rd PM extended to Illinois River 1822 – Standard Parallels established to T31N
Southern ones at irregular intervals with those in north at normal 24 mile intervals.
PM, Baseline, & Standard lines generally not run with any more care than other lines
Area south of baseline never monumented or marked on ground.
Variations in compass or closing generally corrected every 6 miles. Many problems existed in direction.
Evidence of instructions in contracts.
1826-contract contains instructions allowing use of stones.
Surveys in Illinois
1837 – discovered that standard chain (S.G. office) was 2” long.
Correction of 0.004386’/chain/year for areas 1837-1797 or 0.350880’/mile
4.91’/mile in 1811
9.82’/mile in 1825
Last Gov. Contract in Illinois to Alexander Walcott T37N, R14E 3rd December of 1877 (Resurvey)
Most had been completed by 1855-1856
USPLSS Relevant to Missouri
Arkansas and Missouri are the only states west of the Mississippi River that were surveyed based on Tiffin’s instructions 1815 – 5th PM surveyed from mouth of Arkansas river to the Missouri River (317 miles, 35.76 chains) – was later continued to the Mississippi River
Baseline surveyed west from the mouth of the St. Francis River with the Mississippi River west to the Arkansas River in 1815, line was continued west to Range 19W in 1818 and finally reaches the West line of Missouri in 1841.
Initial point of the 5th PM is 57 miles, 60.5 chains north from mouth of Arkansas River and 26 miles, 30 chains west of mouth of St. Francis River.
Position of both river mouths has since changes westward
Arkansas River site is not Beulah Lake St. Francis mouth has moved approx. 1 mile south.
Township 21 N, Range 28 W, 5th PM is very unusual.
It contains 54 sections and 12 fractional sections Arkansas portion surveyed N from standard section, Missouri surveyed S from standard section Overall, a difference of more than 3 miles exists
USPLSS Relevant to Missouri (con’t)
5th PM established on W. side of Mississippi River to avoid having to connect survey systems across Mississippi River
In areas where 5th PM would cross river, (T53N) surveys were laid out from Guide Meridian
Generally 4th and 5th PM are only about 25 miles apart
Generally Guide Meridian governs surveys of the area of Missouri north of Mississippi River Guide Meridian
Procedure of Legal Survey Obtain legal description of property abstract Courthouse
1. 2. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.
3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.
Original government survey Past surveys of area and adjoining Deeds of adjoining Monument record Misc. record and ROW records Co. Tax Assessor Co. Highway Comm. Other sources – if adjoining R.R. or power lines – see them
Obtain Photos – map library Analyze data, plan field work, and talk to property owners Monument search Do prelim field work Calc and analyze field data Set final points Prepare final plat and legal description
Monument Search Obtain all available information
1. 1. 2. 3.
Compile info and determine place to look Field search
2. 3. a. b. c.
Aerial photos Past surveys, field notes ROW maps
Metal detectors Probe Watch for clues â€“ old fence lines, tree lines, etc.
Talk with elderly in the area Based on what is found, determine what is to be tied
When comparing original vs. current measurements it is assumed that differences occurred in all parts of the line, unless the contrary can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt Principle of Proportionate Measurement: new values given to several parts (by re-measurement) shall bear the same relationship to the record lengths as the new measurements of the whole line bear to that record. Government monuments were set by two methods: Single line – township lines and ¼ corners Checkerboard fashion with cross ties – section and township corners Single Proportionate Measurement – applied to a new measurement made on a line to determine one or more positions on that line
Single line corners
Adjusting new survey to be in proportionate agreement with original survey Proportionate measure can not extend beyond a fixed monument and is good only between existing monuments Corners on standard parallels and E-W township lines were originally set along curved lines and this must be taken into account.
Double Proportionate Measurement – applied to new measurements made between four known corners, two each on intersecting meridional and latitudinal lines for the purpose of relating the intersection of both
Checkerboard – township and section corners A retracement survey must be made in all four directions from corner (lost) to nearest existing corners.
Original Government Surveys
Large book – Township Plat and Field Notes for it are together When you copy on one section, copy also any section touching it.
Plats of surveys by county surveyors and more recently plat of survey by all R.L.S.’s Normally indexed by Township and Range Plats of Subdivision Indexed alphabetically, by name of Subdivision, but Section, Township, and Range are shown
Grantor – person selling Grantee – person buying Indexed by year and then alphabetically Explain how to trace back
A description is to furnish the information which is necessary to identify the boundaries of a particular tract of property.
Proper composition of a description requires a knowledge of both law and surveying.
Kinds of Descriptions: Natural objects and adjoiners without numerical data 2. Metes and bounds 3. Public Land System 4. Urban subdivisions (Many descriptions contain components of several of these) 1.
Natural objects – refer to trees, center line of a road, thread of a stream, or a boundary line may be described by giving no information except the names of adjoining owners (This type no longer used). Metes and bounds – these include all pieces of land not in the first class, which can not be described by the public land system or urban subdivision. The description begins by carefully describing the point of beginning, then a distance and direction are given for each line around the tract; the marker at each corner is also described. Rectangular System – this includes all regular tracts within the area covered by the U.S. Rectangular System. Subdivisions – tract in a platted subdivision.
Requirements of a Valid Description In essence, the basic requirements are that is shall be clear, accurate, and brief. 1. Clarity – a legal description should be so clear that it is subject to only one interpretation at any time, present or future.
North – used only to indicate due north – this being the direction parallel with the reference meridian of the survey. Northerly – may be any direction up to 15 ° from north in the 1st or 4th quadrant. Punctuation is also very important. The “Point of Beginning” shall be a corner of a tract surveyed and not the monument to which the tract as a whole is referred.
Accuracy – it is best that a description be preceded by a present survey of the tract. Brevity – this is essential because it enhances clarity.
Interpretation of Descriptions In retracing deeds the surveyor often finds that items may have been omitted or it may contain conflicting calls. 4 General Rules in Interpretation: Best interpretation is that which most plainly and completely gives effect to the intentions of the parties to the deed, as revealed by all the evidence available. In regards to conflicts between calls the order of precedence is:
Senior rights A natural corner or boundary will stand against artificial. Artificial corner or boundary that is identifiable, will control over calls of direction, distance, or area. When a conflict between dimensions and area, the dimensions will govern as long as they are consistent with evidence as to monuments.
Interpretation of Descriptions 3.
If a description is faulty due to an obvious error or omission of essential data, every attempt is made to render it valid rather than void. If 2 interpretations are possible, the one that most benefits the purchaser will be used. General Comments: Where a description calls for a certain area, this area should be included within four lines forming a square, as nearly as possible.
Definition of words: 1.
Along or upon a road: means to the centerline of the road. More or less: the purchaser accepts approximate acreage.
Note: a description which fails to identify the county, state, Âź section, township, and range in which the property is located is ineffective unless the property can still be identified.
Authority of the surveyor
In all states surveyor is licensed by statute and it enables to surveyor to do certain functions and excludes others who are not licensed. Basis of Land surveys: 1.
Every parcel of land whose boundaries are surveyed and monumented by a land surveyor should be made conformable with the record boundaries of such land.
The relationship of possession lines and deed lines should be shown on a plat or in a report furnished to the client. Clients want to know if possession and title lines are the same.
It is the obligation of the surveyor to inform the client as to what documents are needed for the performance of a land survey and he/she should base his/her survey on a satisfactory description from a document.
Includes recorded deed, easements, or other conveyances and the research needed to confirm the descriptions exactness.
The surveyor examines all documents called for or implied in the client’s conveyance. Obtains copies of all maps or drawings called for. Obtains copies of available documents and surveys of adjoining parcels made by public or private surveyors and such other documents that describe interests. 3 main causes of disagreement between surveyors: 1.
Failure to locate all of the documents that give essential information about the area being surveyed. Inadequate field search for monumentation. Incorrect interpretation of evidence or the meaning of documents.
The surveyor does not decide who owns land or property rights, he locates boundaries in accordance with legal descriptions. The surveyor locates lines of possession that do not coincide with the written conveyances and informs clients of such facts in writing.
Search for monuments:
It is the obligation of the surveyor to search for all monuments called for, either directly or indirectly in the description and find all available information pertaining to them.
Search must prove either existence or explain nonexistence. Do not place full weight on findings of another surveyor. A thorough, diligent, and complete search of all evidence is the fundamental essence of land surveying.
Possession Marking Original Survey Lines:
Because original lines marked and surveyed by an original surveyor control other elements in a deed, the surveyor should determine whether or not a line of possession represents a line marked by the original survey.
It is the surveyors responsibility to investigate whether a line of possession represents the original line of a so-called survey or whether possession cane about for other reasons. At times possession may be the best available evidence remaining, but such determination should only be made after a complete analysis of all evidence.
The surveyor locates land boundaries in accordance with the available evidence.
A valid conveyance of land has a definite location on the ground and the mere loss of evidence does not invalidate the conveyance.. The surveyor must have knowledge of the order of importance of evidence.
All monuments set on a survey should be marked to indicate who set the monument.
A land survey should result in the delivery of a plat to the client showing and describing the following: a) b) c) d) e) f)
All monuments found or set (described in detail) The basis of bearings The bearings and distances of all boundary lines The location of all lines of possession The location of encroachments The identification and location of easements
The property surveyor is liable for damages resulting from facts not in agreement with his certificate and is liable for failure to do what an ordinary prudent surveyor would do under the same conditions.
To reduce liability it is wise for the surveyor to do more than the minimum required.
If the surveyor has actual or implied knowledge for which the survey will be used, he/she is responsibility for researching and collecting all of the information covering that parcel and possibly adjacent contiguous parcels. When a surveyor accepts work or a plat of another surveyor, he/she assumes all liabilities for any and all errors that may be present.
Future of PLS
At crossroads: Regain Professionalism – equal to engineer in public eye. Become Technicians – working under engineer Key is Education – incoming and public Key is Pricing – as long as we undercharge for our work we will get nowhere.
Future of PLS Needs:
2 Branches: 1 Chicago area – 1 Rest of state 2 Major Duties:
Must be independent of political influence
Review all surveys to assure compliance to standards Depository for all surveys performed Funding based upon recording fee
Additional work on re-monumentation
Clarify what work falls under license Broaden scope GPS
Future of PLS
What is the surveyors role Is this going to eliminate the need for L.S. L.S. should be “supervisor” (legally required) of GIS work during certain phases.
When tied to control coordinate systems When representing cadastre
California Law; Policy resolution 98-03: any person supervising the creation, preparation or modification of a GIS in areas connected with the state’s definition of land surveying must be licensed as a PLS or registered as a PE authorized to practice land surveying. Surveyor must prepare to tie all surveys to State Plane Coordinates as a basis for GIS.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
The Bureau of Land Management has control of all government surveys Resurvey: a reconstruction of land boundaries and subdivisions accomplished by rerunning and remarking the lines represented in the field notes or on the plat of a previous official survey. Retracement: merely measures lines and identifies monuments or other marks of an established prior survey without restoration of lost corners or the reblazing of lines in timber. Courts hold that original survey of public lands does not ascertain boundaries, but creates them.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
The original survey is the approved survey that creates the parcel of land. An original monument is one set or called for in an original survey.
Prior to approval, the government can make a “corrective survey”. If more than one approved survey for a parcel exists, the most recent survey controls.
When resurveying or dividing federally created sections of land, federal rules for resurvey are followed: 1. 2.
When the final court of adjudication resides in a federal court. When the state court has approved the federal rules.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands Types of resurveys 1. Dependent resurvey: first a retracement of all recoverable evidence of the original corners and lines and the reestablishment of lost or obliterated corners and lines in accordance with the best available evidence and applicable rules of survey. ď Ž
Depends upon recovery of original corners and evidence of lines.
Independent resurvey: casts aside the original survey and creates all new monuments and corners and may include the establishment of new township lines without reference to the original survey.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
Generally once completed these resurveys replace the original. Federal Patent: means by which federal government grants land to private individuals or corporations by way of a release or quit claim without warranty of title. Provided that a superior right is not interfered with or a fraud committed, the boundaries of the public land, when approved, and patented are unchangeable.
Burden of proof is now on retracement surveyor to locate lines as they were actually placed on the ground, not where they should have been.
Must “track in the footsteps” of the original surveyor based on evidence.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
The original township, section, and ¼ section corners (but not closing corners) must stand as the true corner which they were intended to represent, whether in the place shown by field notes or not. The plat and all the original field notes become apart of the grant. Errors on a plat are subordinate to the field notes.
Field notes are the main source of information which the descriptive information concerning corners, monuments, accessories, and line information can be found. Best evidence of how and where lines were run are in the notes.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
A closing corner not actually located on the line that was closed upon will determine the direction of the closing line, but not its legal terminus; the correct position is at the true point of intersection of the two lines.
After a line is run and established, it can’t be altered at a later date if a closing corner monument was not placed, the line can’t be changed to fit the new corner, the closing corner must be moved to the line closed upon.
After making due allowances for natural changes, a monument to be identifiable should not differ greatly from the following: 1.
The character and dimensions of the monument in evidence should not be widely difference from the record. Markings in evidence should not be inconsistent with the record. The nature of the accessories in evidence, including size, position, and markings, should not vary greatly from record.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
Make sure appropriate field notes are checked. Most common monuments are posts, stones, stone mounds, and dirt mounds with pits.
Many original monuments have been replaced by county surveyors with minimal records. If monuments different than those called for are found, reputation and common usage must be relied on. Bearing trees called for have equal dignity with the corner itself.
If scribes exist, they must be consistent with notes.
Where an acceptable map or plat indicates and depicts the found location of an original corner, the corner, if obliterated, may be relocated from said map. (Co. Surveyor Records, Highway Maps)
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands
The original location of a corner may be restored at a spot pointed out by an old resident, who saw the original corner and knows where its former location was.
The witness evidence no more weight than would be given in court and should not be hearsay. Obtain signed affidavit by the witness. Care should be taken against prejudiced testimony. Make sure that statements taken under oath contain facts as to the witnesses personal knowledge.
Under special conditions a corner location can be accepted by common usage of position.
Roads which have been placed on section lines and over a period of time have become the accepted line and best evidence of the line location.
Resurveys of Sectionalized Lands ď Ž
Identification of Original Lines Run ď Ž
Where the direction of a line can be determined from the mean position of line trees or blaze markers of the original survey, the direction established can be controlling where the corner monument is lost. At times a stream or some other natural feature may become controlling, especially if the natural feature is in close proximity of the corner. ď Ž
Many original notes give distances to natural objects as they were crossed by the line.
Subdivision of Sections Protraction is the method of breaking a section down
Regular sections on plat have dotted lines connecting ¼ corners to indicate they are to be subdivided by running straight lines between ¼ corners. Further breakdown is to be done in the same manner unless irregular conditions exist.
Under irregular conditions, dotted lines exist for breakdown into ¼, ¼ with distance and areas shown.
Subdivision of Sections 1.
Where an original ¼ corer was not originally set, place the missing corner on the correction, range, or township line at a point between the found or relocated closing section corners a distance that is proportional to the measurement used for the acreage calculations on the original plat.
1. 2. 3.
The missing corner is usually set midway between closing section corners in section six where it is usually 40 chains proportional measure from the northeast or southeast closing section corner. Applies in the following: Sections closing on a correction line Sections closing on a range line with double or triple corners Sections closing on a township line with double or triple corners
Subdivision of Sections The method to be followed in the subdivision of a section into ¼ sections is to run straight lines from the established ¼ corners to the opposite ¼ corner; the point of intersection is the legal center of the section.
From 1849-1851, Butterfield, Commissioner of the General Land Office issued special instructions which directed that the center ¼ corner be located at the midpoint of a line connecting the east and west ¼ corners.
If it can be shown that a corner was set be this method during this period, the corner is the true center of section.
Often the use and possession point and true center of section does not agree.
The surveyor must investigate this difference, the possession point may control the property, but is not the true center of section.
Subdivision of Sections Prior to the subdivision of ¼ sections, ¼, ¼ or 16 th corners will be established at points midway between the sections and ¼ section corners and between the ¼ section corners and the center of section, except on the last half mile of the lines closing on township boundaries.
In the last ½ mile they are placed at 20 chains counting from the regular ¼ section corner. When 16th corners are set, lines will be run straight between opposite corresponding ¼, ¼ corners. The intersection of the lines thus run will determine the legal center of ¼ section.
Center lines of fractional sections where no opposite corresponding corner exists or can be relocated, the boundary lines shall be run from the established corners due north, south, east, or west as needed to the watercourse, Indian boundary, or other external boundary of such fractional township.
Subdivision of Sections Surveyors should always rely on original corners to set or position lost corners.
Never rely on 16th corners to reestablish ¼ corners Retracement surveyors should not go from within a section to set a corner along the section line.
Measurements from interior corners should only be used to provide evidence as to the correct location on a section line.
Procedure for Retracement survey:
6. a. b.
Should be planned in advance so nothing is overlooked Suggested steps: 1. 2. 3.
Obtain all necessary original field notes and township plats pertaining to the area being surveyed. Search all records for subsequent surveys conducted by private or public parties. Contact old residents concerning ancient land boundaries.
Subdivision of Sections 4. 5.
Examine all pertinent deeds of landowners long the lines to be surveyed and any record documents that may show easements or encumbrances. Make a diligent search for all necessary corners and apply the rules of evidence to determine whether a corner is original, obliterated, or lost.
6. 7. 8.
Set new monuments for new position and replace and deteriorated monuments. Subdivide the section and set any required subdivision corners according to applicable rules of survey. Prepare and file a record of survey indicating the dignity of all points recovered or set and identify all points
If it is lost, reposition corner using proper rules of survey.
Furnish client with report of methods used, monuments set, and decisions made.
In Illinois – file Monument Record on all original corners. IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE RETRACEMENT SURVEYOR TO FOLLOW IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF THE ORIGINAL SURVEYOR AS NEARLY AS POSSIBLE.
Restoration of Lost Corners Relocate lost corners
All lost corners are to be relocated by proportionate measure with due regard to the principle of the precedence of one line over another of less original importance.
Proportionate Measure or Proration
In proportionate measure, the new values given to several parts as determined by the re-measurement, shall bear the same relation to the record lengths as the new measurement of the whole line bears to that record. Single proportionate measurement – is applied to a new measurement made on a line to determine one or more positions on that line.
By court ruling, original monuments, except closing corners, are fixed in position and can’t be moved. Not all lines are straight lines.
Restoration of Lost Corners c)
Double proportionate measurement – are applied to new measurements made between four known corners, two each on intersecting meridional and latitudinal for the purpose of relating the intersection of both. Importance of on line over another – as between single and double proportionate measurement, the principle of precedence of one line over another of less original importance is recognized, thus limiting the control of each method.
Corners on township line, not those set later Order of precedence based on how set, township then interior from SE corner.
Restoration of Lost Corners Restoration of Lost Standard Corners on Standard Parallel, Correction Lines and Base Lines.
Lost standard corners will be restored to their original position by single proportionate measurement on the true line connecting the nearest identified standard corners on opposite sides of the missing corner. Proper adjustment should be made to secure the correct latitude curve. Closing corners are not to be used for either direction or measurement. Standard corners are all corners which were established on the standard parallel during the original survey of that line.
Restoration of Lost Corners 4.
Restoration of Lost Township Corners on Principle Meridians and Guide Meridians ď Ž
when the principle meridian or guide meridian was established by alignment in one direction only, lost township corners on such lines shall be restored by single proportionate measurement. Where guide meridians were established as part of original contract, the township corners located thereon should be relocated by double proportionate measurement.
Restoration of Lost Corners Restoration of Lost Township and Section Corners Originally established with cross ties in four directions will be relocated by double proportionate measurement. Restoration of lost corners along township lines will be restored by single proportionate measurement.
Exception to this principle will be noted in case of any exterior with a record deflection in alignment between township corners Township lines were established before subdivision of sections.
Restoration of lost township and section corners where the line was not established in one direction.
The record distance will be used to the nearest identified corner in the opposite direction.
Restoration of Lost Corners 8.
Restoration of lost corners where the intersecting lines have been established in only two directions, the record distances to the nearest identified corners on those two lines will control the position of the temporary points, then from the latter the cardinal offsets will be made to fix the desired point of intersection.
Restoration of Lost Corners QUARTER-SECTION Corners in regular section within the township will be restored by single proportionate measurement between adjoining section corners, after the section corners have been identified or relocated.
An exception occurs when original lines had angular deflection.
Quarter-section corners where only part of a section was originally surveyed will be restored by record bearing and distance, counting from the nearest regular course which has been identified or restored.
Restoration of Lost Corners A lost closing corner on a standard parallel will be reestablished on the true line that was closed upon and at the proper proportional interval between the nearest regular corners to the left and right.
a) b) c)
The only corners that will control the direction of the line being closed upon are: Standard township, standard section, and standard Âź corners. Meander corners terminating the survey of the standard parallel Closing corners in those cases where they were originally established by measurement along the standard line as points from which to start a survey.
Lost North Quarter corner in a closing section which was originally set, the lost corner will be reestablished on the closing line at a point at the proper proportionate interval between the nearest found or relocated corners to the right and left.