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The Summer Surveying Camp


The Lawrence Scientific School surveying camp was situated this last summer on Martha's Vineyard at the Makonikey Inn, an unused hotel near Vineyard Haven. Up to this year the expedition has usually been taken to Professor Shaler's estate in Chilmark, but the rapid increase year by year in the numbers of those who were taken has made larger quarters necessary. Makonikey is a very convenient starting place for surveying practice as the land rises near the shore high enough to give good locations for triangulation stations. With the sea so close by, the mean sea level is easily obtained.

Three courses of practical work were carried on this summer, an elementary course in plane surveying and two advanced courses in railroad and geodetic surveying. The freshman course, covering the full seven weeks of the period in camp, was spent in running level lines, making chain, azimuth and compass surveys, laying out mining claims, taking soundings, and in plotting the country by the plane table, and transit and stadia methods. Besides the field work a day or two was set aside every week for computing and drawing maps.

The course in geodetic surveying lasted only three weeks this year and consisted mainly in making triangulation surveys of half a dozen hills and in making maps from the results of the surveying. The work is mostly in reading angles and computing, but accuracy is particularly emphasized.

At the end of the geodetic course, the instruction in railroad surveying was begun and carried on through the remaining four weeks of the period in camp. The ground was divided up among three imaginary railroads and a company of men assigned to each. For each party a captain was appointed who assumed the responsibility for the instruments used in the day's work, and who made daily reports of the progress of his section. Each railroad or section was assigned two miles of country for its track. This was first surveyed and the field notes marked on a map. After estimating the cost of the best route the party went into the field again to locate and slope-stake the road.

Mr. D. L. Turner was the instructor in charge of the expedition.

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