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Surveyor Rejected his own monument

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holy cow
(@holy-cow)
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We are a trillion miles from New England but I can think of one rock fence that I hope I get to survey someday.  We have worked across the road from where it starts.  It split what was about 240 acres way back about 1880.  That is an unbelievable number of rocks that had to be found, hauled and placed.  As I recall, everything is surface rocks, not quarried or split by using ice.  It goes west,northwest, northerly, westerly, something, something, something for what might be up to a mile in length.  Everything north and east of the fence has been a separate owner since 1880 as I recall.  The deeds provide no dimensions.

 
Posted : January 21, 2023 12:23 pm
(@on_point)
Posts: 116
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@holy-cow that would be an intriguing one indeed. 😮

 
Posted : January 21, 2023 8:07 pm
NotSoMuch
(@notsomuch)
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I  worked as a survey project manager in SE Connecticut in the late 1980's.  I was then licensed in a PLSS state, but not in CT, and was working under the supervision of a multi-state licensed PLS.

I found that surveying the type of deed mentioned by @holy-cow to be quite easy from a map creation standpoint.  Field crew would locate the wall to the best of their ability and we'd put it on a map.  I don't recall that we even set new drill holes to mark the locations shot on top of the wall.  Everyone knew that the wall was the monument. 

Boundary points on rights-of-way were monumented with "boundary stones" that were usually concrete monuments of substantial size.

As long as the "new" line on the survey stayed on top of the wall, all parties were satisfied.

 
Posted : January 22, 2023 8:04 am

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Norm Miller
(@norm)
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I rejected my own monument on my last survey. Fortunately, I hadn't set it yet. Decided one piece of evidence had a little more weight. 

 
Posted : January 22, 2023 9:02 am
FL/GA
(@flga-2-2)
Posts: 7197
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@cv 

My first thought was those "I'm with stupid" t shirt ensembles of yesteryear. 😎 

 
Posted : January 22, 2023 9:05 am
CV Nevada reacted
KT_88
(@wagner152)
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It would be good to provide a brief explanation of the "error".   Perhaps the original monument was set based on the line of occupation, the fence, which may have been the best evidence at the time.  If new information was discovered later, the surveyor may have decided to use the metes and bounds of the deed.  Even if there was a blunder, calculation error, etc. it would be good to know the "error" for the next surveyor.

 
Posted : January 22, 2023 1:17 pm

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Nate The Surveyor
(@nate-the-surveyor)
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Having studied it much deeper, at this point the point he rejected, is probably correct. And the one he set is not. 

I've not yet done any field work on it. But, I've got a pretty solid look at the area based on a study of the section. Its possible that someone moved monuments in the hood. And they did not move the one "set in error". Intelligent monument movers move all of them the same amount, and same direction. 

Of course I'm speculating. But, I have had someone move ALL my monuments west 3 feet along a particular line. If we did not come off our own control, we would not have caught it. 

Nate

 
Posted : January 22, 2023 2:30 pm
 JPH
(@jph)
Posts: 2230
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@holy-cow

Posted by: @holy-cow

The deeds provide no dimensions.

That isn't unusual.  Mostly it's calls for abutters.  And usually it's the walls that were built for the boundary.

 
Posted : January 23, 2023 6:07 am
 JPH
(@jph)
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Posted by: @notsomuch

I don't recall that we even set new drill holes to mark the locations shot on top of the wall.  Everyone knew that the wall was the monument. 

Drill holes are nice, so that you have a specific measuring point.  And if you're going to establish bearings to the second and distances to the hundredth, it's nice if there are some actual physical marks at each end of the segment that's being dimensioned.

We used to hand drill with a chisel back when I started, and sometimes still do, but with lightweight cordless drills now, it's kind of lazy not to set drill holes, in my opinion

 
Posted : January 23, 2023 6:13 am

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(@minbarwinkle)
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Posted by: @nate-the-surveyor

Having studied it much deeper, at this point the point he rejected, is probably correct. And the one he set is not. 

I've not yet done any field work on it. But, I've got a pretty solid look at the area based on a study of the section. Its possible that someone moved monuments in the hood. And they did not move the one "set in error". Intelligent monument movers move all of them the same amount, and same direction. 

Of course I'm speculating. But, I have had someone move ALL my monuments west 3 feet along a particular line. If we did not come off our own control, we would not have caught it. 

Nate

To me this has always seemed the biggest weakness of using monuments for boundaries. Luckily most surveying work benefits of security through obscurity but if more people became aware of how some surveying work is being carried out, they could definitely use it to their advantage. 

 

What is the general law regarding aggressive possession in the US?

 

 
Posted : January 25, 2023 2:57 am
FairbanksLS
(@fairbanksls)
Posts: 660
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I can’t imagine what it would be like surveying in the southern Appalachian mountains if direction and distance was higher in priority than a call for a monument. While current technology has made it much easier to be an expert measured I would find it less satisfying if that was all that was required to be a Land Surveyor. It’s the history and law that make it interesting. 

 
Posted : January 25, 2023 5:26 am
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