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which perhaps he has no access with any sort of wheeled vehicle, in consequence of the occupation roads being marked down upon the ground to correspond with straight lines previously drawn upon paper; so that they lead, without any controlling power in the surveyor to alter their course, up and down almost inaccessible ravines, or probably for several hundred yards at a stretch along the bed of a stream.

In marking out these sections, the following remarks* will direct attention to the different local peculiarities which require a deviation from established rules, and to the general system of conducting the work in the field; the mechanical practice of surveying being of course supposed to be already known.

Sections laid out with frontages upon main lines of road, rivers, or wherever increased value is thereby conferred upon the land, should have their frontage reduced to one-half, or even onethird of the depth of the section, so as to distribute this advantage among as many as can participate in it, without rendering the different sections too elongated in figure to be advantageously cultivated as a farm.

In addition to this contraction of frontage, easy access by roads must be provided from the country in the rear leading to this water or main road; without which precaution the owners of the front lots would, by blocking up the land behind them, virtually obtain possession of it, for at least pastoral purposes, without payment. These roads should occur at intervals proportioned to their requirement, generally between every third or fourth section.

Every section should have an available road on one of the four sides forming its boundaries, by which the proprietor has access to the main lines of communication; its breadth may vary from half a chain to one chain, according to circumstances; in square or rectangular sections of 80 or 100 acres each, roads surrounding each block of six or eight sections have been found amply sufficient; but in a country at all broken or irregular, some of the roads so laid out would often be found quite impracticable; in such cases, it is necessary either to trace and mark on the ground along the

*Partly extracted from the instructions issued to the surveyors employed in South Australia.

ridges of the secondary features, or wherever the ground may offer fewest impediments, cross roads leading into the main lines, and to lay off the sections fronting upon them; or to make these by-roads run through the sections; which is to be avoided as much as possible, on account of their cutting up small properties, and entailing a very considerable expense in the increased quantity of fencing required.

In parts of the country where water is scarce, the greatest care should be taken to prevent its monopoly by individuals. Springs and permanent water-holes should in such localities be enclosed within a small block of land (one or two acres), and reserved for the use of neighbouring flock-owners and the public generally; and practicable roads must be arranged leading to these reserves, without which, excellent and extensive tracts of land would often be comparatively valueless.

As it would evidently very much increase the cost of laying out sections having broken and irregular frontages, if they were required each to contain exactly the same number of acres; the nearest approximation that can be made to the established size by the judgment of the surveyor should be adopted, and the section afterwards sold according to the quantity of land it is found to measure.

For the purpose of giving to settlers seeking for land upon which to locate, every facility for acquiring information respecting its capabilities, and the positions of the different surveyed portions; the freest access to the statistical reports of the surveyors, and to the plans of the different districts deposited in the Survey Office, should be given. In addition to which, the sections themselves should be marked so distinctly upon the ground by short pickets, driven at intervals regulated by the comparative open and level character of the country, as to enable any person to follow up their boundary lines without difficulty. The angular pickets should be much larger, and squared at the head, on which the number of the section, and of all the contiguous sections, should be marked. Adjacent roads should also be designated by the letter R. Independent of the corners of sections being pointed out by these pickets, they should be deeply trenched with a small

spade or pick, showing not only the angle formed by contiguous sections, but also the directions of their boundary lines.

Road. Such marks remain easily recognised for years, and are not injured either by bush fires or by the constant passage of herds of cattle, by both of which means many of the wooden pickets are soon destroyed.

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It has been generally considered expedient, that roads should be reserved if not actually marked on the ground, (excepting in cases where they would interfere with the erection of wharves, mills, &c.,) along the banks of all navigable rivers, the borders of lakes, and along the lines of a coast. This regulation, if stringently applied, without reference to peculiar circumstances in different localities, would often be found oppressive and mischievous. Very frequently roads laid out with judgment to the various points on the margins of these waters, which are best adapted for the purposes of fisheries, watering flocks, establishment of ferries, building or launching boats, &c., with a sufficient space reserved for the use of the public at these spots, would prove of more general utility.

As a general rule, as many sections as possible should be laid out in the same locality, if the land is of a nature to be soon brought into cultivation. Whilst greater choice of selection is thus given, the comparative cost per acre of the survey is diminished; of course this remark applies only to situations the rapid settlement of which is anticipated.

In marking the boundaries of sections on the ground, all natural features crossed by the chain should be invariably noted in the field-book; on the outlines plotted from which are drawn the general character of the contours of the hills, the different lines proposed for roads, directions of native paths, wells, springs, and every other object tending to mark the nature and resources of the country. Copies of these plans* should always be transmitted to the principal Survey Office, accompanied by a rough diagram, showing, for future reference, the construction lines of the work, and the contents and length of the sides of all sections, also the measure of the angles, when not right angles; and by an explana

* Two inches to one mile is found a very convenient scale for plans of these sections, intended for the information of the public.

tory report, describing the nature of the soil, description of timber, &c., upon each section, and the facilities for making and repairing roads and bridges, and peculiar geological formations of the different districts. A collection of botanical and mineralogical specimens from all parts of the province will also contribute materially to the early development of its natural resources; and surveyors should not be deterred from giving their attention to this subject by ignorance of these sciences, as the specimens can be afterwards weeded and arranged, and afford invaluable statistical information.

At the head Survey Office a meteorological register* is of course supposed to be kept. It is also very desirable that each of the surveyors employed in any large district should be furnished with a good thermometer, rain-gauge, and a mountain-barometer, or aneroid, for the purpose of registering daily observations to be forwarded periodically to the general office for comparison with those obtained from different parts of the province, between which the difference of peculiarities of climate will be thus arrived at.


Surveyors working on a line of coast should be particular in noting all phenomena connected with the rise and fall of the tides and obtain soundings, laid down with reference to established and easily-recognised marks on shore, of all creeks and harbours, whenever this may be in their power. The depths and velocities of all rivers should also be noted at different points in their course, as well as the periods of floods, and their observed influence upon the volume of water in the river.

In laying out sections up narrow rocky ravines, or in situations where creeks or any other natural features present obstacles to the continuance of the methodical rectangular form, adopted as the standard figure, a deviation from this form becomes of course necessary, and the contents of some of the sections thus often unavoidably differ from the established average. Care should however be taken in such cases, to make the outline of these irregular figures as simple as the ground will admit of, both on account of the additional trouble and time lost in their survey, and the increased cost of subsequent fencing by the purchaser.

Attention has already been drawn in page 123 to the necessity of

* A simple form adapted for this is given at the end of the Astronomical Tables.

guarding against the monopoly of road or water frontage. The same sort of precaution is also required in marking out land in rich narrow valleys, or in spots valuable on account of minerals. As a general rule, from which no deviation whatever should be allowed, it may be laid down that no section should ever be permitted to enclose an undue proportion of land, unusually valuable from whatever cause, by extending its length in the direction in which that valuable portion of land runs; whether it be a rich agricultural valley, a mineral lode, a stream, or watercourse.


As regards the actual marking out of the sections upon the ground, when the figure is of a square or rectangular form, the process is a very simple one; whether the true meridian, or the direct line of some main road, or a line forming any angle with the meridian that may be found better adapted to the local peculiarities of the district, be adopted as the guiding line of direction. A spot being fixed upon for the starting point, represented by A in the accompanying figure*, the normal line A B is carefully marked out by a good theodolite in the required direction; if intended to correspond, or to form any fixed angle with the meridian, this must be determined by one of the methods explained in the next chapter. The right angle B A C is then set off, which angle should be observed on both sides of A B (produced on purpose to D), and the


chain measurement along these lines A B and A C, and afterwards along the parallels to A C, may, if two parties are employed together, which can generally be managed under the charge of one efficient surveyor with an intelligent assistant, be carried on simultaneously; the points of junction at the angles of the blocks forming in some measure checks upon the accuracy of the work as it proceeds. The size of these sections, and the intervals between the parallel sectional roads, will depend of course upon local regula

* This figure represents rectangular sections of 80 acres, as laid out in South Australia, the length of which bore to their breadth the proportion of 2 to 1-occupation roads one mile apart, enclosing eight sections. They were, however, frequently laid out square, according to the nature of the ground.

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