Category: Article of the Week

Making Land Surveys by Cunnyngham

New Signals, New Launches, and Faulty GPS Receivers

GPS World: New Signals, New Launches, and Faulty GPS Receivers

R&D of Mobile LiDAR Mapping and Future Trends

Professional Land Surveyors' Act (Effective 1/1/2015)

Guide to Engineering & Land Surveying

Vertical Datum and NAVD 88

by Petr Vanicek

Accurate Elevations for Sea Level Change Sentinel Sites

January/February 2014 National Geodetic Survey- NOAA

Degrees of success: Meeting professional standards through distance e-learning


Latest Innovation in CADD

Licensed Profession or Licensed Trade – The 4-year degree’s impact on surveying by Dave Gibson

Perspective on the Future of the Surveying Profession (2011)


U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics

Advisory Legal Opinion - AGO 90-37


US Air Force to Launch New GPS Satellite Tonight

Atlas 5 rock carries new GPS satellite into Space

Florida Senate votes unanimously to restrict drones

Florida Senate votes unanimously to restrict drones

Florida Police Drones

Florida Police Drones: House Committee Unanimously Passes New Bill Restricting Use

Report of the Secretary of the Interior

Interesting use of the Laser Scanning for recreating the battlefield beaches and bunkers

The story of the Invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944, when Allied forces launched an all-or-nothing
attack on Nazi-occupied Europe via five heavily defended French beaches.

The documentary makes use of LiDAR technology to recreate the landscape; and focuses on a five-hour period on Omaha beach.
It also offers micro and macro views of the assault, detailing the experiences of individual soldiers
while also pulling back to provide a big picture of the battle.

Examples of Land Surveyors in the Bible by William D. Hatfield

Resources Related to the Florida Spanish Land Grants

GPS helped forecast earthquake

Russia's Glonass GPS system suffers major disruption

Millennials and Baby-boomers

Continents in Collision: Pangea Ultima

NAVD 88 is a changing..

Anti-Gator Box

Sochi 2014 Slopestile Course Designs

Sochi Olympic Games 2014 Construction

Florida East Coast Railway

William J. Krome's Lasting Legacy in South Dade

Land Ordinance of 1785

Guidelines for writing legal descriptions

Quadcopter and Multirotor Resource Site!

It's a bird, it's a plane ... no, it's a drone -- shoot it!

15 ways drones will change your life

Florida's East Coast Canal

A History of Florida's East Coast Canal. The Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway from Jacksonville to Miami.


US Construction Spending Up 0.8 Percent in October

Google Could Revolutionize Construction

Everglades Restoration A Constitutional Takings Analysis

Surveyor’s Role in Conflict Resolution

Quasi-judicial Functions of the Land Surveyor

Leveling a Nation

Bottles, Pots, and Pans

Contractor's Guide to Minimum Standards

I thought this article was well written and contained a good background of GPS derived vertical values along the Louisiana Coast, minimum standards, pre-planning, field procedure, establishing permanent deep rod monuments and more.


FLA. Chapter 70.001 Private property right protection

Young Surveyors vision for the Future of the Surveying Profession

Puerto Rico Vertical Datum

Puerto Rico Vertical Datum of 2002 (PRVD02) has been published for the entire island.

The leveling data has been loaded into the NGS database.

Found Henry Washington Post

Recently on map of the week you asked if anyone knew of an existing Henry Washington post. We have had string of projects lately bordering along lines run by Henry Washington, and have had great success in retracing his positions along his lines. The past few weeks we have been working on a project along the Polk/Hillsborough County line and found the remains of one of his post so I though I would share some photos with you since you asked. We originally looked for the witness trees finding the two small tree remains in the photos. These two trees were kind of wimpy looking and the other two tree positions fell in the pavement so we were unable to investigate the other two positions. After rechecking Henry's notes these trees were noted as 8' pines (glad he recorded that information) at the time he surveyed this line in 1842. So we decided to see if we could find any post evidence to confirm our location. The area we were working in was adjacent to an old road grade that had swales cut down what appeared to be several feet from the apparent natural ground, so we were not very hopeful. But to our surprise we found the bottom portion of the light wood post remains just below the surface. Unfortunately we only found the bottom portion of the post since the area had been previously cut down for the swale.

It was raining off and on most of the day so that's why we were dressed like the man from snowy river- we don't typically dress in period clothing during our retracement work only when it is raining, although maybe we should if it helps.

The Professional Status of Land Surveyors

The Professional Status of Land Surveyors by Curtis Brown in 1961, does it apply today?


Facts you should know about having your land surveyed

San Diego Grand Jury Issues Report on City Survey Practices

Helping Surveyors Remember the Past

The Parcel Map with No Monuments

Sand Diego Grand Jury Issues Report on City Survey Practices

Surveying - A Life Without Limits

Very interesting video on the Surveying Profession thought it worth sharing.

This maybe be from Australia, but I think they got the concepts and their message is right on the mark. The title is perfect and says a lot about what our profession should be projecting to the public at large and what the possibilities are.

Error, Accuracy, and Precision

Sea, Shore, and More

Integration of Bathometric and Topographic LiDAR

Bathometry LiDAR (Wiggins CHART)

Trails of the Mesoamericans in Lakkin Itza (Florida)

The “Weight” of Monument Placement

ExpressMap—The End of Surveying?

AutoCAD Computer Virus May Impact Your Firm's Ability to Exchange Digital Data

Underground Surveying

Order vs Chaos

Entropy (order and disorder)

Geodesy, Datums, Map Projections, and Coordinate Systems

The National Geodetic Survey Improves the National Spatial Reference System

The NGS Improves the National Spatial Reference System with Simultaneous Major Product Releases

Rights of Way

Easements including Dominant vs. Servient status

Finding the courage to say "NO"

Best practices for a very large survey

History of the Spanish Land Grants

Meandering: A View of Instructions

“History Corner: Meandering: A View of Instructions”
by Joe Knetsch, Ph.D.

Are land surveyor job opportunities growing or declining?

Little TownMart

History of Early Settlements

National Museum of Surveying

Survey Says?

Survey Monuments and The Law

by Chuck Karayan, L.S.

Survey for Quake Effects

Washington Monument Surveyed for Quake Effects.
How do you do that?

Who named Devil’s Tower

Who named Devil’s Tower? A surveyor of course.

200th Anniversary of the GLO

Controlling Intermediate Monuments

Survey Corner Law

Art of Surveying

Determining Property Corner History

How wide is the right of way on a county road?

Public Land Survey Office

Daniel Boone Land Surveyor

San Bernardino Principal Meridian

Rocky Mountain High

Finding the Western end of the 6th PM Base Line

History of the Railroad

Krome’s Survey of the Railroad mentioned on page 9, I wonder if this is where Krome Avenue came from?


System of Government Surveys

History of Stock Island

Sea Level Rise

Orange County

This chronicles life in early Orange County.
This book talks a little bit about J.O. Fries.


Echo Sounding - Early Sound Methods

Shovels and Pumb Bobs

Does any one used these anymore?

Shovels And Plumb Bobs.htm

Trespass Rights of the Surveyor

Location of Fort Boise

Idaho State Historical Society reference series
Location of Fort Boise

Rules of the Game: Establishing Property Lines

What Is A Land Surveyor?

Land Surveying 101

Florida’s State Lands Authorization

Historic Protection for Florida’s Navigable Rivers and Lakes

Relative Accuracy

Do you understand the difference between relative accuracy and positional accuracy?

This is more important than you think.

Cadastral Survey Accuracy Standards.pdf

Surveyor's Guidebook on Relative Accuracy

Survey Foot versus International Foot: What’s the difference?

Machine Control

Meades Ranch

The Problem with NAD 27

What is a Benchmark?

Papers of the War Department

Surveying for Robert E. Lee

Fantasy Island

Which on is it “lighterwood” or “light wood”?

Historic battlefields in Florida

Types of Disney Survey Markers

Fort Jefferson

NGS History

Prisms of Perception

CoP Bulletin U-Smart

The CoP Bulletin U-Smart gives you the COE nationwide.


American Surveyor - How precise is OPUS?

No man is an island

No man is an island, entire of itself every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main
if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were,
as well as if a manor of thy friends or of thine own were any man's death diminishes me,
because I am involved in mankind and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls
it tolls for thee.

- John Donne (1572-1631)

Rules of the Game: The Four-Year Degree Standard for Surveying’s Recognition as a Profession

Principal Meridian Project

A brief history of the Mason-Dixon survey line

Surveyor's Fees

Signals: Flags, Banners, Cones, and Lights Help Direct Surveys

John Deere fights broadband that disrupts GPS

Sanibel Lighthouse Patent Transfer April 24, 2010

GLO Automated Patents and Surveys

DOT Survey Safety Handbook

Ground to Grid

The Geodetic Monument, 1875-1903

Georgia Land Surveying History and Law

Surveying Chokoloskee's Wilderness World

Surveying in West Florida

The Everglades in the Time of Marjory Stoneman Douglas

Florida East Coast Canal History Footnotes

The Public Trust Doctrine And Florida's Navigable Lakes And Rivers

Half Mile Post

Half Corner - Thigpenn

A half corner is better than none or what a surveyor will do for a quarter.


Can the Clerk of the Court refuse to record a plat?

A question posed to Florida's Attorney General. August 8, 1991.

Vertical Datum's

The USACE has released a manual titled: "Standards and Procedures for Referencing Project Elevation Grades to Nationwide Vertical Datums", (EM 1110-2-6056).

This document, largely the result of the misconceptions of vertical datum’s revealed by levee failures in New Orleans due to Hurricane Katrina, addresses vertical datum use
not only for coastal projects, by also inland navigation and flood control. The entire document can be found at:

Scroll down the list until you find "EM 1110-2-6056".

Using old photos for retracement

Changes in ALTA/ACSM Land Title Survey Standards

Steamboat Communications - the first cross Florida water connection

Preserving Their Interests: The Seminole and Miccosukee Indians

Survey and Letter of 1901

Ecosystem Restoration Becomes National Policy

Florida East Coast Canal

Executive Order 3105

The Fund Concept - April 2011

The “Ultimate Hammer”: Dexter Lehtinen’s Lawsuit

History of South Florida Corps of Engineers Chapter 12, (see attachment “river int chap 12.pdf”)


Using Google Earth

Title Industry Changes Affect Surveying

Development, Water supply and the East Eveglades

Envelopes of Protection

History of South Florida Corps of Engineers Chapter 10, (see river_int_chap_10.pdf)
Envelopes of Protection “ Land Acquisition Programs in Florida, 1980-1990”

Live Oak Island Survey by W.H. Macy 1897

Gainesville Patent No 137

Science in a Race with Politics and Nature

Dredging history of SW Florida Inland Waterways

Steamboat Communications

That Damn Sewer Ditch: Kissimmee River Restoration Efforts

Letters of Survey General

Reagan’s New Federalism and Governor Bob Graham in the 1980s

Part Time Land Surveying Private Practice

Retracing the Original Government Surveys

GLO Circular 1831

Magic Monuments

The Quintessential Surveyor

Historic Cemetery Survey

California - Surveyors and GIS

The "Antiquated" County Surveyor?

History of Old Fort Drum

Articulating a Survey by Joel Leininger, LS

Half Mile Post

Draining the Swamp - Beginning of Flood Control in South Florida

Brief Florida Real Estate History

Coventional Wisdom Be Damned

Capturing History at Mount Rushmore

Infected with Surveying

SMART Surveying

Receding Railroads

Forest Surveyor

Center of Section

Get It Surveyed (GIS)
From Don Lanthorne (forwarded by Rick Pryce) this article from the March issue of online version of GPS World Magazine.

Surveying and mapping in the Coast and Geodetic Survey

GLONASS satellites successfully launched

Boundary Line Agreements

The Ellicott line and Ellicott stone

The Next BLM Manual

Surveyor hunts for old mounds marking Ala-Fla line

Suspended in Midair

How-To Guide to Successful Surface Modeling

Retracement Surveys and Undocument Corners

Missouri-Iowa Boundary Line Investigation

Florida Dipping Vats

Previously discussed was the State of Florida, Tick Fever, Cattle Dipping Vats. I checked this morning and found pictures I have taken over the past several years of found dipping vats. The first three are vats taken near Kenansville, Fl on the Mills Ranch. The last four are of a vat I found on Curry Island in Lake Okeechobee (see Map). (We have talked about Curry Island several time before.) Remember, these were utilized at a time before fences were common and the "Open Range" was used by all cattlemen.

Any rate, you will notice that the vat is constructed with one end a sheer drop (Cattle enter here) while the other has steps cast in the bottom for the cattle to climb out. The sheer drop was to ensure that when the cattle entered, they would go under and be covered completely by the dip. All that remains of these vats are the concrete drip apron and the pitcher pump well pipe.

The vat had a coral and a series of "Pinch Fencing" on the entry end of the vat. This is where the cowboys would drive the herd into the open end of the "Pinch Fences" that would slowly constrict them into a holding pen. Once there, they would close a gate behind them and force them into and through the vat, one at a time, until a small group was collected and dripped semi dry to reclaim any excess dip that would drain back into the vat. You will notice a concrete apron deck built adjacent to the exit end of the vat. That is where the cattle would stand to drip off excess dip. It was built to slope back to the vat for drainage. After the cattle drained the excess dip off of them, they were branded (if not previously branded), treated for wounds and other ailments (if they had the medicines) and then were released back into the open range to roam again until the next time they were gathered. Usually, after dipping the herd, the cowboys made camp and spend the night before moving onward the nest day to herd more cattle toward the next vat.

You should also notice the pipe seen at both vats. The pipe was the well that, with the aid of a pitcher pump, would be used to refill the vat and for any other campground need. The State furnished the Arsenic laden dip. Unfortunately, it is said (I don't know how true) that some cowboys drank from the well that was tainted with the arsenic.

Dipping Vat.jpg
Dip Vat 1.jpg
Dip Vat 2.jpg
Curry Isl Dip Vat.jpg
Cattle Vat at Lake O.jpg
Cattle Vat at Lake O-2.jpg
Cattle Vat at Lake O-3.jpg
Cattle Vat at Lake O-4.jpg

Undocumented Corners - Part 1

SCS in Hendry County, Florida

Quads In Google Earth

Deer Fence

125 Years of Topographic Mapping

How to Guide to Successful Surface Modeling

New BLM Manual

Optech User Conference

How-To Guide for Successful Surface Modeling

1856 Ive’s Military Map - Memoirs

The 1856 Ive’s Military Map was posted, a while back, attached are the memoirs that go with it.

1856 Ives Military Map.pdf

Memoir To 1856 Map.pdf

Southern Colonization Company


excerpt from surveyor magazine.pdf (thanks to Steve Brickley of Culpepper and Terpening, Inc.)

Why do the Research?

Measuring Granite Peak

NGVD 29 or NAVD 88

The Drainage of the Everglades

Mt. Rushmore

How cool is your job?  Check out this site and the methods that they are using to complete their work.  How would you go about surveying Mt. Rushmore?  What do you think of the kite photography?

Thanks to Mary Hanna Clodfelter, Mock Roos & Associates, Inc.

Also check out

USA v. Paradise Prairie Land Company

In India, Old Land Records Go Digital

Rapid Fire Surveying

BIM and Scanning

Suprise, Arizona CAD & GIS

Watch your Language

Civilian Conservation Corps and Surveyors

Mobile Scanning

GIS Data Integration with the GCDB

The Unlicensed Land Surveyor

Why you dial before you dig?

Dial Before You Dig.pps

Provided by Jorge Alonso with FDEP.

What is a posted benchmark?

Marker Off, But Four Corners Monument Legit

Provided by Adam Dao with Creech Engineers, Inc.

A Land Remembered

“A Land Remembered” by Patrick D. Smith published in the mid 80’s (I’d guess ’84 maybe).  It is really a thinly veiled  story of John MacArthur’s family.  It describes in detail the cattle drives to Tampa and the gold payments and how that gold turned into the South Florida empire of the MacArthur Estates.

Recommended by Mike Joiner, FL DOT

'Lady Sabal Palm': A witness to history

by Chappy Young, owner of the Palm City-based surveying and mapping firm GCY, been surveying in South Florida for 43 years.

Traversing the Law: Ambiguity is the key.

Datum Shifts and Geoid Height Models

Mapping the World

Traversing the Law

NGS and Google Earth

Hidden Point Offset

Biscayne Engineering - Celebrates 110 Years

The Greatest Milestone: Biscayne Engineering Company in Miami Celebrates 110 Years.

NGS and Google Earth

Traversing the Law

How to Prepare a Survey Report?

The American Surveyor RTN - 101 Part 15

Can Retracements Be Confidential

The Marriage of GIS and Land Surveying

Preparing a Survey Report - Part 4

Machine Control Redux

American Surveyor Article

Test yourself (skip the first one)

Hermansen Survey Report - Part 4

The Digital Divide

Micro Survey CAD 2008

Preparing a Survey Report

UF Subsidence Report

Reference Systems

Leica ADE Enhances Florida Turnpike's Mobile Asset Management Solution

Everglades Restoration by Tisher

Use of Tidal Datum's in the Law by Brisco

What did they do after lunch?

What did they do after lunch.pdf

From Mr. Tom Whidden PSM

Four seeking surveyor post in Hancock County

Jenkins-Woolpert Best Practices

Wayne County Surveyor

From Mr. Steven J. Hyde Surveyor (FL,OH,KY,WV,TN,ID,AL,SD,ND,NC,SC,WY & USVI)

Pioneer Families of the Kissimme River Valley

Fort Kissimmee

Lyme Disease - U of F Report