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  #1  
Old 02-08-2012, 08:06 PM
LS7773
 
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Fractional Sections

I am doing research in a fractional section (31) for a future Parcel Map and the existing Map that was surveyed in 1906 went an even split between the Northwest-Northeast corners and an even split for the Southwest-Southeast corners. I do not have a 1902 manual, but was that correct method? Attached is the Map - Thanks
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File Type: pdf SM07-031.pdf (153.8 KB, 365 views)
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  #2  
Old 02-08-2012, 10:59 PM
pls7809 pls7809 is offline
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I also do not have a 1902 manual. Were the lots from the 1906 map conveyed in deeds after this subdivision, or were the aliquot parts or Government Lots conveyed? If the lots from the 1906 subdivision were conveyed, then the methods used in that map control. If the conveyances in Section 31 never refer to SM07/31, then it could be that the aliquot breakdown controls, or the SM methods may still control. Once in private hands sections could be subdivided any way the owners saw fit. The corners shown on the map at the even splits may not be the 1/4 corners, but actually the corners of those lots. How does the BLM Township plat show the section's subdivision into quarters?

I think the correct method would have been to place the 1/4 corners at a proportional 40 chains from the NE and SE section corners if the surveyor was trying create the aliquot breakdown.

Anyway, that's my understanding.
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  #3  
Old 02-09-2012, 03:15 AM
LS7773
 
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Yes, lots were conveyed after this subdivision. My concern is that the Center Quarter Corner per this map is not the Center Quarter Corner of the section. The same with the North Quarter Corner and the South Quarter Corner - yet with other parcels being surveyed by Record of Surveys and Parcel Maps - Other surveyors are calling them the Government Corners. I am requesting the BLM Plat today.
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  #4  
Old 02-09-2012, 10:51 AM
Ian Wilson Ian Wilson is offline
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Mauro,

I am confused. Why is this a fractional section?

Section 31 was entirely subdivided in 1906. As Ryan stated, once the land passed into private hands, the "Manual" no longer has any bearing. The sub-divider could choose to re-divide the section by any method they chose. Remember, too, that until March 4, 1972, property owners on California. Old subdivide ther property by deeds; maps were not required, except in certain jurisdictions.

Regardless of what "others" have labeled the monuments in this section, the monuments that hold sway and will likely be upheld by the courts are the ancient ones that were established in 1906.

Be very careful of the fact that "better measuring through better electronics" is a dangerous approach and will absolutely screw up private property rights.

BTW - in this case, the GLO plat is now. You posted the only map that has any standing or precedence in the further subdivision of this section.
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  #5  
Old 02-09-2012, 11:58 AM
E_Page E_Page is offline
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Check out the attached case as well. It's an OR case, but it's also a good bet that the CA courts would rule similarly if the issue were presented to them.

Even if the current descriptions call out aliquot divisions rather than lots of the Lindsay Orchard Colony Tract, it is most likely that those divisions were laid out with reference to the monuments set by Smith (Tulare County Surveyor in 1906).

The GLO created plats, monumented the section and exterior 1/4 corners, and rarely monumented any corners interior to the section. The plats normally show protracted divisions. These protracted divisions were the plan of how the federal government intended the sections to be divided. But the GLO recognized that the local or county surveyor would be the authorized person to subdivide sections which had passed out of federal ownership.

I don't know how many manuals one would have to go back to find the express statement by the BLM/GLO regarding private surveyors and section subdivision, but 3-76 of the 1973 Manual is quite clear that the BLM "desires" that the local or county surveyor follow the federal plan for the subdivision of sections, but they are not required to do so by federal law.

If the local or county surveyor did not fully follow the prescribed plan, that does not necessarily invalidate that surveyor's subdivision. And if the description calls for the aliquot division, that does not necessarily override the surveyor's subdivision in favor of the "technically correct" division per the method described in the current Manual or the one which was in effect at the time of the subdivision.

All of the land shown as part of the Lindsay Orchards Colony Tract were presumably in the private ownership of one person or entity at the time of subdivision. The County Surveyor, while not recognizing the difference to the standard method of subdividing a section for a fractional section (or perhaps not recognizing Section 31 as fractional), used the standard method for a normal section. He was presumably the first to subdivide the section by marking the lines on the ground. It is therefore the first actual (as opposed to protracted) subdivision of that section and is the controlling one.

Having passed out of federal ownership prior to the subdivision in 1906, the subdivision per the map of Lindsay Orchards Colony Tract, hopefully witnessed by either original monuments or monuments with pedigree that can be traced to Lindsay Orchard Colony Tract, is the controlling subdivision, superseding the GLO protraction where it differs.


In Dykes v Arnold attached, the county surveyor had set the C 1/4 in 1899 at midpoint between the E 1/4 and the W 1/4, and that monument was recognized and relied upon for the establishment of several parcels over the years. Then about 100 years later, a surveyor came along and decided that the County Surveyor in 1899 was wrong and that the C 1/4 needed to be redefined "correctly" at a position that was on the intersection of straight lines between opposing 1/4 corners and 71' away from the 1899 monument, thus tossing the neighborhood into disarray and unneighborly mayhem.

Part of the discussion in the ruling is that the method used by the County Surveyor in 1899, while not being the one described in the GLO Manual or Instructions in effect in 1899, was a method commonly employed in the area during that era. The method used by Smith is undoubtedly common and is the correct one for a standard section, deviating even less from the modified method prescribed for a fractional section than Smith's did from the method prescribed under the circumstances of his survey (although the method Smith used was a method temporarily prescribed by a US Surveyor General in MO - IIRC, not too many years prior to Smith's survey). The Dykes court does a great job of explaining the legal reasoning why the 1899 was the correct corner, why the mathmagically correct corner was wrong, and relies heavily upon the BLM Manual to show it. It's a beautiful thing. It should be required reading for every boundary surveyor.
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File Type: doc Dykes v Arnold.doc (110.0 KB, 139 views)
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Last edited by E_Page : 02-09-2012 at 12:18 PM.
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  #6  
Old 02-09-2012, 03:49 PM
LS7773
 
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Thanks for all the input - I like to hear from others. Ian, my intention was to hold the monuments that I found and complete the survey per that subdivision map. I just had doubts as to what to call the North quarter corner if it is truely not. Attached is the government plat -Evan thanks for the case.
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File Type: pdf Plat-T20R27.pdf (235.5 KB, 223 views)
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  #7  
Old 02-13-2012, 09:37 AM
LS_8750 LS_8750 is offline
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Read that Dykes case a thousand times. And then read it again.
Proportioning in aliquot corners should be an absolute last resort, and even then you should really check your premises because there will be a property owner who has believed his property line to be in a different location than your math solution, and that property owner will prevail in court.

You have other surveys in the Section? You are lucky.
Occupation will likely trump any of your math corners. Be very careful.
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  #8  
Old 02-13-2012, 11:18 AM
E_Page E_Page is offline
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Gosh Mauro, that Section 31 is so close to being a normal section that any difference in method between that for a standard section and that for a fractional section would be insignificant.
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  #9  
Old 02-13-2012, 03:03 PM
bruce hall bruce hall is offline
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In Wood vs. Mandrilla the fight was over where a fractional portion of a section lay on the ground. It was in Section 30, just above yours. Different Township and Range though.

The Supreme Court stated that after the quarter corners where set then the 16th corners were to be set equidistant from the appropriate quarter corners. It didn't have anything to do with setting quarter corners. Just a thought.

I like what Evan and Ian said better than what I have added. Should delete, oh well.
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  #10  
Old 02-14-2012, 11:33 AM
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The 1906 Map has the appearance of a subdivision map creating new lots within the boundary of a Gov't Section and if the subdividers owned all of the Section they can create whatever they want. The N 1/4 by GLO definition was not set and the corner shown is a Lot Corner (or maybe not if the dedication to the County for the road is in fee). Interestly, I don't see where the Map indicates what corners were found or set begging the question what are the controlling original Gov't Corners for this Section ? I agree that if the deeds calls for the Lots on the Map, they supersede aliquot parts. It appears from what information has been disclosed, the Map rules.
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  #11  
Old 02-23-2012, 11:13 AM
RetiredCalLS RetiredCalLS is offline
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I Agree with McGee

Your job it to survey your specific deed. Show all other found items and lines of occupation. Any other Assumptions or Interpretations are a legal matter for the Courts.

S. Davis Retired LS 4968
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  #12  
Old 02-23-2012, 04:32 PM
E_Page E_Page is offline
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Your job is to identify the boundaries of the property you were hired to survey.

It may be possible that at some point, one or more of these properties, originally conveyed as Lot X of the subdivision had its description erroneously changed to the aliquot division.

Being so close to the size and shape of the aliquot division, such a mistake could very well have happened. If you have a description that calls for the aliquot, but there is also evidence that it was conveyed as Lot X when 1st sold, then it should be surveyed as Lot X per that subdivision.

In this particular case, even if it was 1st described as the aliquot, I would survey it as Lot X of the subdivision.

Some of you may now be exclaiming "Page, you're reckless!!! You are taking it upon yourself to interpret intent contrary to the clear, unambiguous description!!! You don't know what the he!! you're talking about!!!"

To that, I reply with all due respect "Phhhttttt!!!!!"


Take a look at the GLO plat. The dimensions are: East line = 80 ch; South line = 80 ch; West line = 80 ch; and the North line = 79.99 ch.

The only thing that makes this section fractional is that the North line is 1 link shy of a full mile (perhaps the same could be said about those who say that Mauro should reinvent the wheel and toss the subdivision in favor of a "correct" Ch 3 section subdivision).

That's 1 link! 0.66'!! On just one exterior section line!!!

On all but the North line, the 1/4 corners would be properly re-established at the midpoints of the section lines, just as was done for Lindsay Orchard. Along those lines, the Lot corners and the corners of the aliquot divisions are the same. No quibbling about it.

Along the North line, the Lot corner and the properly established Ch. 3 1/4 corner would be 0.33' apart. The C 1/4 and the Lot corner near it would be 0.16' apart, as would the E 1/16 between Sections 30 & 31 from the Lot corner near it.

But what were the monuments at those locations? The legend says 6x6 posts at the Section Corners, 4x4s at the 1/4s (or the lot corners where there is a difference and to be technically correct), and 2x4s at the 1/16s.

In each case, the mathemagical difference is less than the size of the object marking the corner's location. Further, the differences were probably well within the expected amount of positional error for the survey of Lindsay Orchard and certainly well within the actual positional errors of the original GLO surveys.

Those facts, together with the extremely low likelihood that anyone having described one of the parcels by the aliquot division at nearly the identical spot would have set monuments so close to those established for Lindsay orchard (in most cases, they would have had to knock the Lindsay post over to accommodate the new "correct" monument) leads me to interject a bit of common sense into my professional judgment and bring me to interpret the intent (egad!!!) as being one and the same whether described a s Lot X or as the aliquot division, and that the boundaries should be re-established according to the survey of Lindsay Orchards and the monuments thereof.
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  #13  
Old 02-24-2012, 01:32 PM
Ian Easton Ian Easton is offline
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I'm with Evan on this one. I think it's all quite clear on the Lindsay Colony Tract what the intention of the subdivision was meant to be.
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  #14  
Old 02-24-2012, 02:07 PM
dmi dmi is offline
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Lots are what makes some call it fractional

The reason the section is called fraction is because the section contains lots. Over time the habit has formed whereby sections with lots have been called "fractional". This section is not a fractional section as defined by the current manual.

The current manual attempts to correct this habit and reserve the term for sections that are truly fractional. these are sections where opposite1/4 corners cannot or have not been fixed because the section is invaded by a body of water or a senior grant.
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  #15  
Old 02-24-2012, 04:06 PM
Ian Wilson Ian Wilson is offline
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Thank you, Dane!
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  #16  
Old 02-29-2012, 08:56 AM
Stephen Johnson Stephen Johnson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cals6406 View Post
http://www.californiacentralvalleysu...BLMbooks.shtml


As are copies of all the BLM Manuals of Instruction (except the new one).


I also have a second copy of the 1902 Manual (printed 1908) available for sale or trade.
I added a couple of PDF's of manuals I have found over the years to their collection
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  #17  
Old 02-29-2012, 10:09 AM
Steve Martin Steve Martin is offline
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Not Fractional

I am glad Dane posted his clarification. I was reading down thru the posts all the while thinking that Section 31 is not a fractional section, why is everyone calling it fractional? Section 31 does asorbe some of the excess or deficiency along the range line, but is is not fractional even as defined even by the 1973 manual.
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Old 03-17-2012, 03:23 PM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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This section 31 is not fractional and the original distances are either 80 or very close to 80 and would make the 1/16 sec. corners at midpoints.

If you want to subdivide sections according to Robillard/Bouman, you can, but it will not be in conformance with the Manual!

This bogus theory of two subd. of sec. lines needs to be thrown in the trash.

Keith (retired BLM)
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Old 03-17-2012, 03:29 PM
Ian Wilson Ian Wilson is offline
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Keith: I made the fractional point back in Post #6 and got some interesting comments by email.

However, what is this theory of two subd. of sec. lines you mention? I'm not ollowing your abbreviations or numbers.
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Old 03-17-2012, 04:04 PM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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Ian,

I did read your comments above and agree.

Don't tell us that you don't know about the bogus theory of Robillard/Bouman that there is one and only one section subd. line and that is the mathematical intersection of straight lines between the 1/4 sec. corners and any other existing line by occupation or even "erroneous" survey, are simply "property lines" and NOT the legal subd. of secs. lines.

It is about time that this bogus theory is knocked in the head and thrown in the trash. Read and reread the Rivers case in Florida as it supports this bogus theory and existing interior private survey monuments are simply ignored!


Or, maybe others who happen to believe in this nonsense, can come up with other VALID writings to support it?

Keith

Last edited by Keithwill : 03-17-2012 at 05:08 PM.
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  #21  
Old 03-17-2012, 05:26 PM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LS7773 View Post
I am doing research in a fractional section (31) for a future Parcel Map and the existing Map that was surveyed in 1906 went an even split between the Northwest-Northeast corners and an even split for the Southwest-Southeast corners. I do not have a 1902 manual, but was that correct method? Attached is the Map - Thanks
Looks to me like the section was retraced exactly right and the 1/16 sec. cors. set at midpoint.

Keith

Last edited by Keithwill : 03-17-2012 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 03-17-2012, 05:31 PM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LS7773 View Post
Yes, lots were conveyed after this subdivision. My concern is that the Center Quarter Corner per this map is not the Center Quarter Corner of the section. The same with the North Quarter Corner and the South Quarter Corner - yet with other parcels being surveyed by Record of Surveys and Parcel Maps - Other surveyors are calling them the Government Corners. I am requesting the BLM Plat today.
I do not understand this post?
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  #23  
Old 03-18-2012, 08:22 AM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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Does anybody have this quote available to post here?

"See Clark 7th 10.22 on center of section by County Surveyor before you make your decision."

Quoted from above.

Thanks,

Keith
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  #24  
Old 03-18-2012, 11:51 AM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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The following was posted over on the RPLS.com board and was NOT posted on the SurveyorConnect/BeerLeg board.

I have heard many times from lawyers and land surveyors that the protracted subd. of sec. lines that are shown on the original GLO survey plats, are in fact set by law and the law is cited as 43 USC 752 and are unchangeable!!

That is the bogus theory in all it’s glory!

Ok, let us peruse Manual and see what it really is about. First, go to the 1973 Manual at sec. 1-18, where it provides for the Rules of Survey. And I like to point out the following: Sixth. All lines shall be plainly marked upon trees, and measured with chains, containing two perches of sixteen and one-half feet each, subdivided into twenty-five equal links; and the chain shall be adjusted to a standard to be kept for that purpose.

Ok, now go to page 6 of the same Manual section at the bottom of the page in the first column; “Second . . . And the boundary lines which have not been actually run and marked shall be ascertained, by running straight lines from the established corners to the opposite corresponding corners; . . . “

Now consider the premise to all this and that both of these specific sections are the law! Somebody going to tell us that adhering to one and not the other is legal?

Or maybe this premise? The law was written and I will safely assume that the Land Department of the Federal Government (General Land Office) had input to these laws. At least that is how the Congress works now and I had input to laws when I was in the BLM Washington Office. That is how the world turns.

Then again, why not accept the premise that these statements are the law and that it was necessary for the Land Department to issue guidelines in compliance with the stated laws. One should read all of the Manual section 1-18 to fully understand it.

So, the Manual then has other Chapters on retracement and resurvey procedures and this is the rub....some surveyors have not opened the Manual to those Chapters!

A little history: Prior to 1900 the Federal Government had land surveyors resurvey those townships that were shown to be very poorly done originally and very few monuments were ever found; so a resurvey was performed and this resurvey was actually a complete redo of the township and ignored all evidence on the ground that the landowners had located themselves in good faith.

Hence, the 1909 Resurvey Act and the pertinent part is quoted in the 1973 Manual at sec. 6-12. This is again the law at 43 USC 772: “That no such resurvey or retracement shall be so executed as to impair the bona fide rights or claims of any claimant, entryman, or owner of lands affected by such resurvey or retracement.”

Now, it really comes down to the Manual interpretations of the Law and it provides land surveyors with advice on how to carry out that Law. That is the responsibility of the Land Department and that is now the Bureau of Land Management only.

Nowhere in the Manual are there any provisions, that I call a bogus theory, that provides for direction on the mathematical only intersection of the center lines of the section to determine the subd. of sec. lines and subsequently ignore all evidence of Bona Fide Rights! NOWHERE!

It would behoove all land surveyors to think this through and obviously, come up with case law, legitimate research documents that supports the bogus theory.

Why would there be two section subdivision lines on ground when there is only one on paper?

Ya gotta think about it.

Sincerely,

Keith Williams
Retired Land Surveyor
BLM Washington Office
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  #25  
Old 03-18-2012, 01:05 PM
Keithwill Keithwill is offline
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Does it not seem plausible that if all there was to surveying section subdivision lines at exact mathematical intersection only, would not that only require an expert measuring technician, because a professional land surveyor would not be needed to make any judgement decisions?
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