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authorized by the department was prepared by the writer for the use of the office, and printed July 1st, 1864. The modifications and additions contained in this pamphlet are now made a part of every surveying contract, subject of course to such subsequent changes as may from time to time be found necessary.
These rules and instructions are only intended to be furnished by the department to persons in the government service, and the aim of the writer has been to embody them in a practical form for the use of the student and the general public; he has endeavored to furnish a TEXT-BOOK which will enable surveyors to fit themselves for the public service. To this end the present work has been systematized and arranged in convenient divisions and subdivisions under appropriate heads, and illustrated by examples, forms, diagrams and maps.
To the Manual proper are added instructions for restoring extinct lines and corners of the public surveys, and for subdividing sections. These directions are based upon the laws of Congress and the well-established precedents of the General Land Office, and are very complete, embracing, it is believed, the principles at least, of nearly every case that will arise in practice. County surveyors in the public land states know well the difficulties experienced in executing this kind of surveys, and will find these instructions a great aid in performing their work.
The manner of proceeding to have certain public lands surveyed in advance of the regular progress of the public surveys, under the provisions of the 10th section of the act of May 30th, 1862, known as the deposit system, is explained; also how to proceed to get certain small islands surveyed.
An Appendix is added to the work containing instructions, forms, and rulings of the General Land Office, in regard to entering, locating, purchasing, and settling lands under the several acts following, to wit: Pre-emption Laws, Homestead Laws, Military Bounty Act, Agricultural College and Revolutionary Land Scrip, Mining Laws, etc.
Also in regard to the adjustment of public grants of land to states and corporations, for railroads, canals, schools, universities and other purposes, and the survey and settlement of private
land claims, under foreign titles and special acts of Congress, with various forms, etc.
The comprehensive index attached to the book will enable the reader to turn readily to any subject desired.
The writer cheerfully acknowledges his indebtedness to HoN. JAMES M. EDMUNDS, late Commissioner of the General Land Office, for his valuable aid in selecting and preparing the instructions contained in the Appendix. He also takes this occasion to return his acknowledgments to HON. JOSEPH S. WILSON, the present Commissioner, for the uniform courtesy and kindness shown him in affording every facility to obtain the necessary data to complete the work and bring it down to current date.
Trusting that he has to some extent succeeded in producing a hand-book of the public land system suited to the wants of a large and intelligent class of his fellow-citizens, the writer respectfully submits the following pages to the public, with the earnest wish that they may be instrumental in securing a uniformity in the laws and practice in the several land states, conforming to the laws of Congress and the decisions of the United States Courts.
Areas of the States and Teritories, and public lands surveyed in each... 18
U.S. SYSTEM OF RECTANGULAR SURVEYING.
Townships-Sections-Subdivisions of sections-Principal meri-
dians and base lines-Ranges-Standard parallels................ 25
COURSING, MEASURING, AND MARKING LINES.
Burt's solar compass-Standard chain-Tally pins-Marking tools
-Horizontal measurement-Process of chaining-Line trees-
Marking lines-Insuperable objects on line-Random lines-
Chief object of surveys-Kinds of corners and mode of perpetuat-
ing the same: (1) Corner trees; (2) Stone corners; (3) Posts
and witnesses; (4) Posts and mounds-Manner of constructing
mounds-Bearing trees-Witness pits..............
Township corner posts: (a) Standard township corners; (b) Clos-
ing township corners-Township corner stones-Township
Township and range-Variation of needle-Courses and measure-
ments-Bearing trees-Mode employed to perpetuate corners
-Line trees-Intersection of land objects-Intersection of
hills, etc.-Intersection of water objects-Bottom lands-
Lakes and ponds-Settlements and improvements-Springs-
Minerals and coal beds-Roads and trails - Rapids, cas-
cades, etc.-Precipices, caves, etc.-Natural objects-Land
surface-Timber-Dates-General description-Names of sur-
veying party-Verification of deputy surveyors-Verification
of assistants-Approval and certificate of Surveyor-General.. 42
Meandering of navigable rivers-Meandering of rivers not navi-
gable-Wide flats-Islands in rivers-Lakes, ponds, etc........
Oath prescribed to be taken by all persons in the public service......... 64
When one deputy does the work under a joint contract he may verify
The surveying manual and instructions of the Commissioner part of
Prescribed limits for closings, and lengths of lines in certain cases...... 68
Short method of finding the area of a multangular field........
Table showing the difference of latitude and departure in running 80
Surveys may be made at expense of settlers in advance of the reg-
Certain small islands may be surveyed at the cost of applicants...... 88
Specimen field book.........
MODE OF RESTORING LOST CORNERS...............
To restore extinct interior section corners.....
To restore Section Corners on Township Lines, in the fol-
3. Where both corners are missing, and it is required to restore
the one established when the township line was run............
4. When it is required to restore the corner established when the
5. When triple corners have been established on range lines, one
or two of which have become obliterated, and it is required