Northern MN Land Surveying Resources

This page will provide you with links to land surveyor information and resources to help guide you through the process of having a survey done for you. Some of the information available is external to our website. Bear Island Surveying has included these sites because we believe they provide information and/or services that the person looking for a surveyor or currently working with a surveyor will find useful. However, since these sites are not under our control, we cannot attest to the accuracy of information provided by them. Linking to these websites does not constitute an endorsement by Bear Island Surveying, Inc. or any of its employees of the sponsors of these sites or any products or services presented on them.

Glossary of Cartographic Terms - Perry-Castañeda Map Collection - UT Library Online
Glossary of Cartographic Terms.

A Guide to the Records of Minnesota's Public Lands
This publication contains valuable information on historical records concerning the transfer of federal lands in the state, including a concise history of the General Land Office survey.

Minnesota's Bearing Tree Database
The Public Land Survey (PLS) began in 1847 in Minnesota and established the Public Land Survey System (PLSS) network of townships, ranges, and sections. As part of the PLS, surveyors were instructed to record specific information for all bearing trees located during the course of the survey. These bearing trees were notched, blazed, and scribed in a standard way to facilitate the relocation of the survey corner should the wooden corner post or corner stone be lost or moved. The surveyor was required to note for each bearing tree the following information: 1) its type (~ species), 2) its diameter, 3) its distance to the corner, and 4) its azimuth or "bearing" from the corner. Bearing trees were required at both the standard corners of the rectangular survey grid and at points on the survey lines where the surveyors were forced to meander around impassable areas such as lakes. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources - Natural Heritage Information System (NHIS) Bearing Tree Database contains computerized records of the bearing trees at standard section and quarter-section survey corners.

Minnesota Rules and Regulations for Land Surveyors
Compilation of the Minnesota Statutes Relative to Land Surveying by the Minnesota Society of Professional Surveyors.

Land Survey Articles

Following are land survey articles that will interest and perhaps suprise you.

Famous Surveyors
Some famous people you probably never realized were surveyors.

Geometry and Surveying
An article tracing the links between the development of geometry and the development of land surveying.

History of Surveying and Measurement
International Institution for the History of Surveying and Measurement.

The Mason-Dixon Line
Most Americans know the Mason-Dixon Line as the divider between North and South; freedom and slavery. But the line's origins have nothing to do with slavery.

Land Survey Information Resources

Following are resources that will help you understand more about how professional surveyors operate and the requirements for becoming a professional land surveyor.

American Congress on Surveying and Mapping
Professional organization of surveyors, cartographers, geodesists, and other spatial data disciplines.

Colleges and Universities Offering Surveying Education with ABET Accreditation
ABET, Inc., is the recognized accreditor for college and university programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and technology.

Land Surveying Resources Handbook
Land Surveyors Handbook for resources and links around the web to helpful information related to virtually every aspect of land surveying, including surveyor support groups and Surveying Glossary.

Land Status Records Abbreviations

Minnesota Board of Architecture, Engineering, Land Surveying, Landscape Architecture, Geoscience and Interior Design (AELSLAGID)
The board examines, licenses, and regulates the practice of architecture, professional engineering, land surveying, landscape architecture, geoscience, and use of title for certified interior design.

Minnesota Geospatial Commons
The Minnesota Geospatial Commons is a collaborative space for users and publishers of Minnesota's geospatial resources. The Commons is used by researchers, cartographers, web and application developers, planners, journalists, and other citizens who need GIS data for a project.

The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES)
A national non-profit organization composed of engineering and land surveying licensing boards representing all U.S. states and territories.

Occupational Outlook for Surveying
Provided by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Occupational Outlook for Surveying and Mapping Technicians
Provided by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The U.S. Public Land Survey System (USPLSS)
The USPLSS applies to most of the U.S. except for the thirteen original colonies, Texas, and Hawaii. This cadastral survey is the systematic basis for land subdivision in most of the country. One should be familiar with the system for land ownership reasons and because of the tremendous imprint it has left on the natural landscape.

Your Land and the Land Surveyor
An informational page outlining why you should consult a professional land surveyor before you buy, sell, divide or build. Provided by The Minnesota Society of Professional Surveyors.


Ely, MN and BWCA Resources

Following are links to resources available in the Ely, MN area and the BWCAW (Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness). Some we have broken down by season - summer, fall, and winter, to show you what makes Ely so great during the year and how to take advantage of what Ely has to offer. Others are useful links to services and attractions available year-round.

Boundary Waters Journal
A new standard of excellence in outdoor periodicals. Uniquely designed to inspire greater understanding, appreciation, and stewardship of America's most popular wilderness area.

DNR Lake Finder
Contains data for more than 4,500 lakes and rivers throughout Minnesota, including: lake surveys, lake depth maps, lake water quality data and lake water clarity data (from the Pollution Control Agency), satellite-based water clarity information (from the University of Minnesota), lake notes, and fish consumption advice (from the Department of Health).

Ely Chamber of Commerce

Ely MN Area Fall Activities and Attractions
Activities and attractions in the Ely and surrounding area that can be enjoyed in the fall.

Ely MN Area Local Activities and Attractions
Activities and attractions in the Ely and surrounding area.

Ely MN Area Summer Activities and Attractions
Activities and attractions in the Ely and surrounding area that can be enjoyed in the summer.

St. Louis County
Web site of St. Louis County, MN, the home of 200,500 people scattered throughout in small mining towns, farm communities, and in busy cities which serve as regional hubs. Ely is located in St. Louis County.