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Missouri River Commission Triangulation Stations

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Does any documentation exists that lists all the triangulation stations placed by the Missouri River Commission? I have the "Descriptions and Elevations of Bench Marks on the Missouri River", which lists all the bench marks and references the triangulation stations. It only references the triangulation stations by number but doesn't provide a list of their locations.

 

I accidentally found a MORC triangulation station and I wanted to figure out which one it is and possibly locate bench marks near it that reference it. the one I found is in St. Charles, Missouri.

 

Thank you,

Chris

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While this doesn't provide a list of the benchmarks, I found this article on the subject to be pretty interesting...among many other details, describes the numbering method.

 

http://www.amerisurv.com/PDF/TheAmericanSurveyor_Penry-MissouriRiverCommisionSurvey_Vol10No6.pdf

 

Since these weren't placed by the NGS, they will only be in the NGS database (and geocaching's copy) if they were later located and used by the NGS or it's predecessor. The easiest way to hunt these is with the "NGS Data Explorer" at http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/NGSDataExplorer/

 

Note that this website has a bug (invalid site certificate) and while most links to it are to the "https" version, it only works correctly when opened without encryption (http). What would be most useful for what you want, I think, would be to load the radius around a location, and then switch to list view and look at the names, which for these marks are apparently things like "17 CAP", "17 BOLT", and so on...

 

This is an example of the datasheet for one of the marks you are interested in. Given their age, most have probably had the aboveground marks damaged or destroyed at some point, but the belowground marks should still normally be intact unless there has been construction in the area, as they are apparently pretty deep.

 

http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_mark.prl?PidBox=JC0135

 

If you browse the descriptions, it shouldn't be incredibly hard to find the one you discovered, "if" it's in the NGS database.

 

There is also a page (with photos) about the ones located in Nebraska here http://www.penryfamily.com/surveying/morcmain.html

Especially worth looking at is this one, lol... http://www.penryfamily.com/surveying/morcbm109-3.html

 

Brownie points for adding these as waymarks also, and EXTRA brownie points for submitting a recovery report to the NGS on their website here... http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/datasheet.prl

 

I have found triangulation stations that were obviously in active use (brand new marker post for nearby road construction, or a recently dug 2 foot deep hole) that had not been reported to the NGS for decades.... in one case the 'pasture' described in the notes had 40 foot trees in it, so take older descriptions with a grain of salt, and please update them if needed. :)

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Thanks Shirley. The station isn't on GC. There's no NGS datasheet on it. It doesn't appear to have been sumitted to NGS.

 

I'll probably log it on GC once there's an NGS datasheet, assuming there will be.

 

Go here - HC0135 to the benchmark page on GC.com and then scroll down to click on nearest benchmarks. That page and all the pages listed at the bottom of that page will show all of the benchmarks in that general area and the coordinates.

 

You are welcome.

 

Shirley~

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Thanks revent!

 

It doesn't appear to have a datasheet on the NGS. I called them and they got me a contact with the MO Dept of Agri. I called them and they are going to search their offline sources for any information.

 

While this doesn't provide a list of the benchmarks, I found this article on the subject to be pretty interesting...among many other details, describes the numbering method.

 

http://www.amerisurv.com/PDF/TheAmericanSurveyor_Penry-MissouriRiverCommisionSurvey_Vol10No6.pdf

 

Since these weren't placed by the NGS, they will only be in the NGS database (and geocaching's copy) if they were later located and used by the NGS or it's predecessor. The easiest way to hunt these is with the "NGS Data Explorer" at http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/NGSDataExplorer/

 

Note that this website has a bug (invalid site certificate) and while most links to it are to the "https" version, it only works correctly when opened without encryption (http). What would be most useful for what you want, I think, would be to load the radius around a location, and then switch to list view and look at the names, which for these marks are apparently things like "17 CAP", "17 BOLT", and so on...

 

This is an example of the datasheet for one of the marks you are interested in. Given their age, most have probably had the aboveground marks damaged or destroyed at some point, but the belowground marks should still normally be intact unless there has been construction in the area, as they are apparently pretty deep.

 

http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_mark.prl?PidBox=JC0135

 

If you browse the descriptions, it shouldn't be incredibly hard to find the one you discovered, "if" it's in the NGS database.

 

There is also a page (with photos) about the ones located in Nebraska here http://www.penryfamily.com/surveying/morcmain.html

Especially worth looking at is this one, lol... http://www.penryfamily.com/surveying/morcbm109-3.html

 

Brownie points for adding these as waymarks also, and EXTRA brownie points for submitting a recovery report to the NGS on their website here... http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/datasheet.prl

 

I have found triangulation stations that were obviously in active use (brand new marker post for nearby road construction, or a recently dug 2 foot deep hole) that had not been reported to the NGS for decades.... in one case the 'pasture' described in the notes had 40 foot trees in it, so take older descriptions with a grain of salt, and please update them if needed. :)

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Thanks Shirley. The station isn't on GC. There's no NGS datasheet on it. It doesn't appear to have been sumitted to NGS.

 

I'll probably log it on GC once there's an NGS datasheet, assuming there will be.

 

 

Unfortunately, NGS won't add a record to their database without a fairly extensive process known as 'bluebooking', which requires standardized monumentation and both absolute and relative professional quality GPS surveys. See here... http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/INFO/Policy/files/062012_Data_Submission_Policy.pdf

 

Also, the gc.com copy of the NGS database is quite old, and since the advent of Waymarking will probably never be updated.

 

You CAN, however, create a waymark for the location without the NGS foo. :) Just use your gc.com login at Waymarking.com, and submit it. There is an approval process over there, but it shouldn't be any problem at all.

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Does any documentation exists that lists all the triangulation stations placed by the Missouri River Commission? I have the "Descriptions and Elevations of Bench Marks on the Missouri River", which lists all the bench marks and references the triangulation stations. It only references the triangulation stations by number but doesn't provide a list of their locations.

 

I accidentally found a MORC triangulation station and I wanted to figure out which one it is and possibly locate bench marks near it that reference it. the one I found is in St. Charles, Missouri.

 

Thank you,

Chris

The place to find the Missouri River Commission Information is in the old Report of the Chief of Engineers, U.S. Army, Appendix AAA Report of Missouri River Commission, December 9, 1884 covers a few states and Triangulation Station Descriptions. You will probably have to go to a good library to find these reports from various years in the 1880's. Here is a link to the maps created by the Commission and you will see triangles indicating the Horizontal Control Stations.

MORC Maps

 

Jerry's book is very well written with a lot of good MORC information. You might consider purchasing it here:

MORC book by Jerry Penry

 

Good Luck, Kurt

Edited by CallawayMT

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The place to find the Missouri River Commission Information is in the old Report of the Chief of Engineers, U.S. Army, Appendix AAA Report of Missouri River Commission, December 9, 1884 covers a few states and Triangulation Station Descriptions. You will probably have to go to a good library to find these reports from various years in the 1880's. Here is a link to the maps created by the Commission and you will see triangles indicating the Horizontal Control Stations.

MORC Maps

 

Jerry's book is very well written with a lot of good MORC information. You might consider purchasing it here:

MORC book by Jerry Penry

 

Good Luck, Kurt

 

In my best Smithers voice, exxxcellent. These are, as a matter of fact, available online. Expect another post soonish with linkies. :)

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In my best Smithers voice, exxxcellent. These are, as a matter of fact, available online. Expect another post soonish with linkies. :)

 

Ok, heh.

 

Report of the Chief of Engineers, 1894, Part 6, Appendix YY: Report of the Missouri River Commission, Appendix A7:

- Index of surveys and physical data in annual reports Missouri River Commission from 1885 to 1893, both inclusive.

http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.b3076898;view=1up;seq=84

 

The relevant page number are normally located in Part 4 or Part 6 of the volumes for a year. The catalog record for the series is located here...

http://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/010304360 (University of Cailfornia)

http://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/008348722 (New York Public Library)

http://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/008898705 (Princeton University)

 

The relevant sections for Triangulation Stations are those on "Secondary Triangulation"... the primary triangulation was conducted using temporary station marks located along the river banks around 1880, and only tied in to the secondary at locations where, for example, the tree hadn't fallen down. :)

 

For benchmarks you are looking at the sections on precise and ordinary levels, with the "P.B.M." mentioned in the titles being "Permanent Bench Marks", mainly the ones of the stone-pipe-cap variety. For these they also cared if the tree had grown. :P

 

Enjoy!

 

Just as a note, these are also available (if you can find them) on Google Books and the Internet Archive. Google Books metadata for books is based on OCR, and to be honest, sucks, and the Internet Archive is, well, a bit lacking in useful search functionality to be blunt, but those copies might occasionally be more legible on certain pages if they were scanned from a different copy of the book (duplicate book scans are extremely common).

Edited by revent

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Also, occurred to me to mention that you will probably be unable to obtain 'location information' in the sense of latitude and longitude for the P.B.M.s (the leveling stations) in most cases, at least without later information (NGS or USGS data). The measurements simply weren't made. It should be possible, though, to 'figure out' their general location based on the given information in most cases, once you have found a member of the line. For this, I noticed while looking through these that the annual reports of the various division engineers usually discuss the field work in their district and give useful information that isn't in the index. There are tables and tables and tables... :)

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Also, occurred to me to mention that you will probably be unable to obtain 'location information' in the sense of latitude and longitude for the P.B.M.s (the leveling stations) in most cases, at least without later information (NGS or USGS data). The measurements simply weren't made. It should be possible, though, to 'figure out' their general location based on the given information in most cases, once you have found a member of the line. For this, I noticed while looking through these that the annual reports of the various division engineers usually discuss the field work in their district and give useful information that isn't in the index. There are tables and tables and tables... :)

 

I have the "Descriptions and elevations of bench marks on the Missouri River" that describes the locations of the bench marks when they were placed. It's pretty funny to read the descriptions. They reference the stations, which is why I am really interested to get the PID of the station I found.

 

For some fun, I'm gonna go out on the river bank tomorrow and, using the descriptions, see if I can locate any bench marks.

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pixerit,

 

Can you post a photo and L/L for your MORC Tri Station?

 

Several years ago squarenail sent me hard copy excerpts from the below:

 

Annual Report of the Secretary of War for The Year 1891 in Five Volumes ---- in Five Volumes ---- Volume II - in Six Parts. Part 6 ----- Washington Government Printing Office 1891.

 

http://books.google.com/books?id=oG9NAAAAYAAJ&pg=PP7&source=gbs_selected_pages&cad=3#v=twopage&q&f=false

 

Hopefully the above link will take you there.

 

Information on MORC Tri's are in Appendix AAA (Page 3723) with Lat/Longs starting on Page 3763 near Three Forks, Montana (South Base with back sight angles and distances to North Base and Gallatin) and continuing down river to Kickapoo (back sights Weston & Sheridan) on page 3782. Written descriptions start there and end on Page 3802.

 

In Montana we have found that for some reason a graduated adjustment has to be made to the 1891 L/L to correct them to the Datasheet. I have visited the location for nearly 300 of the 500 +/- MORC's (BM & TRI) that were placed in Montana. Only 25 of 279 BM's have a PID (many are inundated by Fork Peck Reservoir) but with the information in the 1912 'Bench Marks on the Missouri River' I have found 58 of the NONPID's. Quite a few of these do have an 'X' on the USGS Quad's.

 

My favorite NONPID find.

 

93eea7a5-a0d4-4c85-88fb-60a32dcc5f54.jpg

 

MORC NONPID BM 26

 

I have an Excel file for all the Montana MORC's, with adjusted L/L's that I would send to anyone that is interested.

 

kayakbird

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Also, occurred to me to mention that you will probably be unable to obtain 'location information' in the sense of latitude and longitude for the P.B.M.s (the leveling stations) in most cases, at least without later information (NGS or USGS data). The measurements simply weren't made. It should be possible, though, to 'figure out' their general location based on the given information in most cases, once you have found a member of the line. For this, I noticed while looking through these that the annual reports of the various division engineers usually discuss the field work in their district and give useful information that isn't in the index. There are tables and tables and tables... :)

 

I have the "Descriptions and elevations of bench marks on the Missouri River" that describes the locations of the bench marks when they were placed. It's pretty funny to read the descriptions. They reference the stations, which is why I am really interested to get the PID of the station I found.

 

For some fun, I'm gonna go out on the river bank tomorrow and, using the descriptions, see if I can locate any bench marks.

 

http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.b3076864;view=1up;seq=571

 

This is the exact link to the station descriptions for the triangulation stations in Missouri.

 

The area was surveyed in 1924 by the USGS. What is the 'modern' St. Charles 7.5x7.5 Quadrangle was published in two sections...

 

North Bank: http://ims.er.usgs.gov/gda_services/download?item_id=5580220

South Bank: http://ims.er.usgs.gov/gda_services/download?item_id=5580220

 

Triangulation Station CHARBONNIER is visible in the upper right of the south bank image, near the map border. According to Google Maps, it's located on the hill directly above the St. Stanislaus Conservation Area in Hazelwood, and by my eyeball it should be around 1000 feet west of the transmission tower. When driving along Aubuchon Road after passing Teson (going east) you should be looking almost exactly in the right direction.

 

According to the 1954 map, if you go to the location of the transmission tower (access from the end of Old Charbonnier Road), where the road turns just south of the tower there should be the remains of an old road leading off into the woods, and the station will be not far off the 'road' to the left.

 

The station doesn't have a NGS datasheet, so I don't have exact coords, but 38.815N 90.391W should put you within a few hundred feet.

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Thanks for all the replies. I was finally able to track down which station it is I found. A gentleman from the Corps of Engineers helped me. I emailed NGS to submit a recovery for it, but they told me they are unable to track these types of markers. But I did add a waymark for it on Waymarking: http://www.Waymarking.com/waymarks/WMKPYK_MORC_Tri_Station_Hamburg

 

Also, occurred to me to mention that you will probably be unable to obtain 'location information' in the sense of latitude and longitude for the P.B.M.s (the leveling stations) in most cases, at least without later information (NGS or USGS data). The measurements simply weren't made. It should be possible, though, to 'figure out' their general location based on the given information in most cases, once you have found a member of the line. For this, I noticed while looking through these that the annual reports of the various division engineers usually discuss the field work in their district and give useful information that isn't in the index. There are tables and tables and tables... :)

 

I have the "Descriptions and elevations of bench marks on the Missouri River" that describes the locations of the bench marks when they were placed. It's pretty funny to read the descriptions. They reference the stations, which is why I am really interested to get the PID of the station I found.

 

For some fun, I'm gonna go out on the river bank tomorrow and, using the descriptions, see if I can locate any bench marks.

 

http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.b3076864;view=1up;seq=571

 

This is the exact link to the station descriptions for the triangulation stations in Missouri.

 

The area was surveyed in 1924 by the USGS. What is the 'modern' St. Charles 7.5x7.5 Quadrangle was published in two sections...

 

North Bank: http://ims.er.usgs.gov/gda_services/download?item_id=5580220

South Bank: http://ims.er.usgs.gov/gda_services/download?item_id=5580220

 

Triangulation Station CHARBONNIER is visible in the upper right of the south bank image, near the map border. According to Google Maps, it's located on the hill directly above the St. Stanislaus Conservation Area in Hazelwood, and by my eyeball it should be around 1000 feet west of the transmission tower. When driving along Aubuchon Road after passing Teson (going east) you should be looking almost exactly in the right direction.

 

According to the 1954 map, if you go to the location of the transmission tower (access from the end of Old Charbonnier Road), where the road turns just south of the tower there should be the remains of an old road leading off into the woods, and the station will be not far off the 'road' to the left.

 

The station doesn't have a NGS datasheet, so I don't have exact coords, but 38.815N 90.391W should put you within a few hundred feet.

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Missouri River Commission River Miles,

I was surprised to find a reference to 'Missouri River Table of Distances (Missouri River Commission ca. 1893)' in a recent publication of the Oregon Archaeological Society.  Have not been able to find that on line, but did use CallawayMT's above link (see below)  to download a .tif for the entire reach of the river in Montana and a couple on into North Dakota (Plates 58 thru 83).  Wish that I had done that ten years ago.   MEL

 

MORC Maps

Edited by kayakbird
correct typos, insert 'recent', delete extra 'table of',

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