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Stone moument in Glasgow, MO

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While I was in Glasgow, Missouri last week, I found this unusual stone post. The post includes information about the founding of the town, past mayors, a nearby Civil War battle, the first, large all steel bridge in the world (Alton Railroad, 1879), historic floods, geographic coordinates, and elevations. The post includes the geodetic distance to Washington, D.C., St Louis, Kansas City, and San Francisco at the bottom of the east face. The south face lists the subscribers for the monument.


The post was dedicated on Aug 12, 1911, and has suffered the effects from almost 100 years of exposure. I've included photos that might be of interest to benchmark hunters.


The elevations include "DRCTX" before the value. Does anyone know this reference?




Overview, northeast corner - Glasgowpillarnortheast.jpg


East face, top - Glasgowpillareasttop.jpg


East face - Glasgowmonumenteastface.jpg


North face, top - Glasgowpillarnorthtop.jpg


Top of stone post - Glasgowpillartop.jpg

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"DRCTX" is an abbreviation for directrix, a datum to which every local benchmark is tied to.

Here's an excerpt from the Kansas City Mo. Dept of Public works.

Municipal Surveying and Mapping Developments


As all elevations are relative, a zero or starting elevation is needed. Many municipalities have a “City Directrix” or datum plane that is the lowest point in the city. Lake cities used the elevation of the water surface of the lake. River cities used the low water marks at a certain point along the river. Sea coast towns used mean sea level. The point is that many municipalities set up its datum place and set up “benchmarks” or points of known elevation throughout their area. By starting a “benchmark” the relative of any points are easily determined.


Here's a report on the St. Louis directrix from the Missouri River Commission (1912):

Descriptions and elevations of bench marks on the Missouri River. Elevations referred to St. Louis city directrix (1912)


Cool find. I'm sure the local historical society or library will have a little more info on why this was set.

This would make a nice addition to the Waymarking site.

~ Mitch ~

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That monument is downright... chatty? Lots of neat information, for sure. Cool find.

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The two references provided by Difficult Run are excellent. I really appreciate the link to the book on the Missouri River benchmarks.


Chatty is perfect work to describe everything included on the moument.


The post is west of St Mary's Catholic Church, or N39 13.49 W92 50.71.

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