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The Next Edition of the Manual of Surveying Instructions and the Modern Cadastre Presented by: Steve Douglas, Chief Cadastral Surveyor BLM Eastern States.

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Presentation on theme: "The Next Edition of the Manual of Surveying Instructions and the Modern Cadastre Presented by: Steve Douglas, Chief Cadastral Surveyor BLM Eastern States."— Presentation transcript:

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2 The Next Edition of the Manual of Surveying Instructions and the Modern Cadastre Presented by: Steve Douglas, Chief Cadastral Surveyor BLM Eastern States Office, Springfield, VA Bob Dahl, Cadastral Surveyor BLM Lands and Realty Group, Washington, D.C. Arkansas Society of Professional Surveyors 2005 Spring Conference Little Rock, AR – March 25, 2005

3 Cadastre – Cadastral – Cadastral Survey What is the Manual of Surveying Instructions? Why is the Manual relevant to the PLS in Arkansas? Agenda

4 The Public Land Survey System The Land Ordinance of May 20, 1785 called for: –Appointing a Geographer and one surveyor from each state –Begin the surveys on the right bank of the Ohio River at intersection with the west boundary of PA. –Run due west for seven ranges of townships setting corners every mile (This line is called the Geographers Line) –Divide townships into 6 mile squares by running due north-south and others crossing them at right angles –External township lines only –Run lines according to the true meridian

5 The Public Land Survey System The Act of May 18, 1796 provided for: –Appointment of a Surveyor General –Measurement of section lines with a two-pole chain –Recording of corner descriptions in a Field Book –Numbering of sections with 1 in the NE corner –Preparation of 3 plats and descriptive notes –Every other unsold township to be divided into 9 four- mile square blocks –First reference to navigable rivers as public highways

6 The Public Land Survey System The Act of May 10, 1800 provided for: –The division of townships into sections and half- sections –Corners set at one mile intervals and half-mile corners were to be fixed on E-W lines only –Allowed for the sale of ½ sections (320 acres) –Called for the establishment of local land offices headed by a Register and Receiver The Act of March 26, 1804, provided for: –The sale of quarter sections (160 acres)

7 The Public Land Survey System The Act of February 11, 1805, is very important to all Surveyors: –Original corners control –Boundaries as run and marked cannot be changed –Measurements & quantities returned are held to be true (basis for proportionate measure) –Aliquot parts of a section defined –Statutory rules for section subdivision defined –Rules defined for the subdivision of fractional townships and sections

8 The Public Land Survey System The Act of April 24, 1820, provided for: –The sale of ½ quarter sections (80 acres) –N-S line through the quarter section in accordance with the 1805 Act The Act of April 5, 1832, provided for: –The sale quarter-quarter sections (40 acres) –E-W line through the quarter section in accordance with the 1805 Act

9 The Public Land Survey System General and Special Surveying Instructions –Earliest instructions merely recited the laws concerning the survey of the public lands –Mansfield Instructions of 1806 expected the surveyors to be technically knowledgeable about the survey system –Tiffin Instructions of 1815 were the most detailed early instructions –Rector Instructions of 1818 for IL, MO and AR are basically similar to Tiffin’s

10 The Public Land Survey System General and Special Surveying Instructions –Prior to 1831 the general technical aspects of the PLSS was considered to be a function of the Surveyors General –Each interpreted the survey laws according to their understanding of the intent of those laws –Some of them did not issue detailed instructions to their Deputy Surveyors –In 1831, Commissioner circulated a set of surveying instructions to the surveyors general, which was not adopted completely by any of them in preparing instructions

11 The Public Land Survey System First Manual issued to Surveyor General of Oregon in 1851 In 1855, Oregon Manual made applicable to all districts established in and after 1850 –Apparently not made to apply to districts established before 1850 –These districts included Arkansas In 1863, Congress made the 1855 Manual part of all public land survey contracts –This finally brought national uniformity to the PLSS

12 The Public Land Survey System

13 Manuals of Surveying Instructions –1851 Instructions to the Surveyor General of Oregon –1855 Instructions to the Surveyors General of Public Lands of the United States –1864 Instructions to the Surveyors General, Amendments to the 1855 Manual –1881 Instructions to the Commissioner of the General Land Office to the Surveyors General of the United States –1890 Manual of Surveying Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States and Private Claims

14 The Public Land Survey System Manuals of Surveying Instructions –1894 Manual of Surveying Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States and Private Claims –1902 Manual of Surveying Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States and Private Claims –1930 Manual of Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States –1947 Manual of Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States –1973 Manual of Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States (Technical Bulletin 6)

15 What is impetus for the next edition? Scope of the project – Technical project nested in a web of administration What is the process? How are we going about it? Where are we to date? Agenda

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17 Bureau of Land Management

18 What is the Manual of Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States? (Manual) Whom/What is affected?

19 Why is the Manual Relevant to the PLS in Arkansas?

20 ARKANSAS CODE § Survey of public land (a) For an entry of the public lands of the U.S., the county surveyor shall make surveys in accordance with the entry (c) It shall be the duty of the county surveyor, when subdividing any section, to make the survey conformably to the original survey

21 Boundary Land Surveys All surveys shall meet the “Arkansas Minimum Standards for Property Surveys and Plats,” latest edition ARKANSAS RULES & REGULATIONS

22 Article 14A5. The Board may take disciplinary action against any registrant found guilty of violations of the Arkansas Minimum Standards for Property Boundary Surveys and Plats ARKANSAS RULES & REGULATIONS

23 Section 3.2C The current BLM Manual of Surveying Instructions shall be used as a guide for the restoration of lost or obliterated corners and subdivision of sections Arkansas Minimum Standards for Property Boundary Surveys and Plats

24 Section 3.2E2c Any monument marking location of a sixteenth, quarter, or section corner shall be marked in accordance with the current BLM manual Arkansas Minimum Standards for Property Boundary Surveys and Plats

25 Court of Appeals of Arkansas Morrow v. White, 12 Ark. App. 16; 670 SW2d 459 (1984) GLO surveys and plats give each parcel a specific and identifiable location; lands were disposed by the Federal Government with reference to these surveys

26 Court of Appeals of Arkansas Morrow v. White, 12 Ark. App. 16; 670 SW2d 459 (1984) The approved GLO surveys formed the basis for the description of lands when disposed of by the government and any errors, were merged into the government grants. A patent or other original conveyance made with reference to a subdivision conveyed those lands which the GLO Plat showed it to contain.

27 Court of Appeals of Arkansas Morrow v. White, 12 Ark. App. 16; 670 SW2d 459 (1984) The purpose of subsequent surveys in locating corners and boundaries is not to correct any error or variance of the original surveyor but is to retrace his steps by use of his field notes and plats and to locate the corners where he located them.

28 Court of Appeals of Arkansas Morrow v. White, 12 Ark. App. 16; 670 SW2d 459 (1984) The Manual of Surveying Instructions published in 1973 by the BLM, sets out the prescribed method of relocating lost corners

29 Supreme Court of Arkansas Tolson v. Southwestern Improvement Association, 97 Ark. 193; 133 SW 603 (1911) The GLO Restoration of Lost or Obliterated Corners and Subdivision of Sections sets out the rule to be observed in the subdivision of quarter sections into quarter- quarters

30 UNITED STATES CODE Title 43 Public Lands § 2 The Secretary of the Interior or such officer as he may designate (BLM) shall perform all executive duties appertaining to the surveying and sale of the public lands of the United States

31 It is settled law that the United States may survey what it owns and thereby establish and reestablish boundaries, but what the government does in this regard is for its own information and cannot affect the rights of owners on the other side of an existing boundary. United States v. State Investment Co., 264 U.S. 206, 212 (1924), citing Lane v. Darlington, 249 U.S. 331, 333 (1919). United States Supreme Court

32 The Manual of Surveying Instructions describes how cadastral surveys of the public lands are made in conformance to statutory law and its judicial interpretation. (1973 Manual § 1-1.) It is within the province of the Director to determine what are public lands, what lands have been surveyed, what are to be surveyed, what have been disposed of, what remains to be disposed of, and what are reserved. (1973 Manual § 1-11.) MANUAL

33 By fundamental law, upon the issuance of a patent for land by the Federal government; it is just as if the monuments, survey plat and field notes, and the laws, regulations and rules governing how to survey the land described in the patent, are stapled to the face of the patent. The survey rules are spelled out in the manuals, circulars and instructions issued by the GLO and later by the BLM.

34 Is there still a need for the Manual?

35 Contact Information Announcements: Upcoming Presentations General Information Next Edition Website

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