Troy's Genealogue

Note:

New Domain:
www.genealogue.info
New Journal

Family Histories:

U.S. Gazetteer:
Locations of Significance to Our Ancestors

August 2011
The following gazetter focuses on places of significance to my ancestors. The list is arranged by three major phases in American migration: Pre-Revolution and early Post-Revolution, the Louisiana Purchase territories, and the Gold Rush and Westward Expansion. Within each section the states and territories are listed chronologically as our ancestors settled in each area. Additionally, because we're now in the GPS age, I've included geographic coordinates down to the second (accurate to approximately 100 feet) on known or estimated locations.

Most the places linked below can be found through the U.S. Geologic Survey (USGS) Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) and displayed through a Google Maps server.

Having said that, in addition to mapping single points, Google Maps now offers a way to share customized maps with numerous icons. My saved maps can be called up in your browser through the Google Map icon.

Google Earth users can also download my genealogy ".kmz" map file by clicking on my Google Map File to import pertinent locations from my genealogy folder, organized in subfolders by surname. Enjoy!...but be patient, Google Earth takes a good while to load.


East
13 Colonies/States
and post Revolution
Mid-West
Louisiana Purchase (1803)
and "Manifest Destiny" (1839)
West
Mexican Cession (1848)
and Gold Rush (1849)
Massachusetts (1630)
Pennsylvania (1685)
Virginia (~1700)
Connecticut (1716)
Maryland (1745)
Kentucky (1786)
New York (~1797)
Ohio (<1799)
Vermont (<1804)
Indiana (1822)
Iowa (1838)
Illinois (<1843)
Nebraska (~1859)
Kansas (~1887)
Wisconsin (~1889)
Minnesota (<1905)
California (1851)
Oregon (>1920)

Non-U.S. Gazetteer

East: Original 13 Colonies/States & Early Post-Revolution

Massachusetts (1630)

Pennsylvania (1685)

Virginia (~1700)

Connecticut (1716)

Maryland (1745)

Kentucky (1786)

New York (~1797)

Ohio (<1799)

U.S. Geological Survey land survey grids in Ohio and Indiana are based on the First Principle meridian and base point at 405922N 0844811W, which was established in1819. The meridian forms the border between Ohio and Indiana.
In 1785 the first reference meridian was located along the Pennsylvania-Ohio border on the north shore of the Ohio River at 80?2'20"W

Mid West: Louisiana Purchase (1803) & Manifest Destiny (1839)

Indiana (1822)

U.S. Geological Survey land survey grids in Ohio and Indiana are based on the First Principle meridian and base point at 405922N 0844811W, which was established in1819. The meridian forms the border between Ohio and Indiana.

Iowa (1838)

Nebraska (~1859)

Kansas (~1887)

Wisconsin (~1889)

Minnesota (<1905)

West: Mexican Cession (1848), Gold Rush (1849) & Westward Expansion

California (1851)

U.S. Geological Survey land survey grids in central California and Nevada are based on the Mount Diablo meridian and base point established in 1851. The initial point is located on the peak at 375254N 1215447W (37.8816667 -121.9130556).

Oregon (>1920)

U.S. Land Survey

The basics of land survey (and I make no claim to be an expert) are six mile by six mile township grids organized east-west from a meridian line and north-south from a base line:

Twp 2N
Range 2W
Twp 2N
Range 1W
Twp 2N
Range 1E
Twp 2N
Range 2E
Twp 1N
Range 2W
Twp 1N
Range 1W
Twp 1N
Range 1E
Twp 1N
Range 2E
Twp 1S
Range 2W
Twp 1S
Range 1W
Twp 1S
Range 1E
Twp 1S
Range 2E
Twp 2S
Range 2W
Twp 2S
Range 1W
Twp 2S
Range 1E
Twp 2S
Range 2E

Each township is comprised of one-mile square sections of 640 acres and are numbered from the northeast corner of the township as such:

36 31 32 33 34 35 36 31
1 6 5 4 3 2 1 6
12 7 8 9 10 11 12 7
13 18 17 16 15 14 13 18
24 19 20 21 22 23 24 19
25 30 29 28 27 26 25 30
36 31 32 33 34 35 36 31

Each 640-acre section can then be divided into halves (320 acres), quarters (160 acres), and so forth.

As such, the northeast corner of Township 1N Range 1E will lie 6 miles north and 6 miles east of the central meridian-baseline point whereas Township 1S Range 1W will start at the central meridian-baseline point.

Meridan-baseline points include:

Therefore, to approximately locate the northeast corner of Township 3S Range 4W, Section 22 based on Mount Diablo in California, measure 15 miles south (2 full townships X 6 miles, plus 3 miles) and (3 full townships x 6 miles, plus 2 miles) 20 miles west.