The rectangular survey gets underway in Wisconsin, 1835.

Map of the surveyed part of Wisconsin Territory: compiled from public surveys as returned to the Surveyor General's Office


In 1785, the federal government began using the rectangular survey system to organize, divide, and sell government-owned frontier land. Land surveying in Wisconsin began in the 1830s in the lead mining region of the southwest, and progressed east and north as lands were ceded by Indian nations and surveying parties worked methodically across the state. This map shows the progress of the survey during that decade. Three copies are shown: "copy 1" shows the map as originally issued (and demonstrates the fragility of the historic record); "copy 8" includes a handful of ink additions around Milwaukee and elsewhere; "copy 7" has been updated by hand by its original owner to show the progress of the survey in southeastern Wisconsin. All three copies have insets showing the French long-lot land tenure system around Green Bay, and the Lake Michigan shore around Milwaukee. Click on any part of the map to zoom in for a closer look.


Related Topics: Explorers, Traders, and Settlers
Territory to Statehood
The Northwest Ordinance, 1787
Early U.S. Settlement
Creator: Morrison, S. ; (Samuel); Dwelle, Elisha. ; Hathaway, Joshua,; 1810-1863. ; Sutherland, Joel B.; 1792-1861.
Pub Data: [Cincinnati, Ohio], Doolittle & Munson, 1835; in the Wisconsin Historical Society map collection (GX 902 1835 D)
Citation: Morrison, S.(Samuel) et. al. "Map of the surveyed part of Wisconsin Territory: compiled from public surveys as returned to the Surveyor General's Office." ([Cincinnati, Ohio]; Doolittle & Munson, 1835). Online facsimile at:  http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/turningpoints/search.asp?id=128; Visited on: 8/21/2014
Join Now.