Charting the Inland Seas: A History of the U. S. Lake Survey

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Throughout the history of the Great Lakes many organizations have played important roles in the growth and development of the water system. Charting the Inland Seas highlights the work done by the U.S. Lake Survey, one of the most notable, yet least known, organizations in the history of the Great Lakes. With the first great influx of settlers into the Great Lakes region came the need for extensive surveys and accurate navigational charts. In the 1830s shipowners and masters pressed the federal government to ...
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Overview

Throughout the history of the Great Lakes many organizations have played important roles in the growth and development of the water system. Charting the Inland Seas highlights the work done by the U.S. Lake Survey, one of the most notable, yet least known, organizations in the history of the Great Lakes. With the first great influx of settlers into the Great Lakes region came the need for extensive surveys and accurate navigational charts. In the 1830s shipowners and masters pressed the federal government to begin a thorough survey of the Great Lakes in order to make available detailed maps and charts of the various routes by which the lakes could safely be sailed. In 1841, Congress appropriated $15,000 for the Corps of Topographical Engineers to begin a survey of the northern and northwestern lakes, thus marking the formation of the United States Lake Survey. Arthur M. Woodford documents how the role and responsibility of the Lake Survey grew as conditions on the Great Lakes changed over the next 135 years. Great Lakes ships evolved into larger vessels with greater drafts, creating the need for new and more exact surveys and charts. In order to more accurately predict the water levels of the Great Lakes, special forecasting techniques evolved. When erosion of beaches threatened to destroy valuable lakefront property, extensive studies by the Lake Survey determined the causes. And as the number of recreational crafts increased, a program began for the design and publication of large scale book charts for boaters to use. In addition, the U.S. Lake Survey was one of the military's major suppliers of maps and charts during the two world wars and the Korean conflict. In 1970 the federal government established the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as part of the Department of Commerce, and brought together, in a single agency, the major federal programs dealing with the seas and the atmosphere, and the U.S. Lake Survey was reorganized. In 1976,
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814324998
  • Publisher: Wayne State University Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/1994
  • Series: Great Lakes Bks.
  • Pages: 304

Table of Contents

Illustrations
Foreword
Acknowledgements
I The New World Beckons 1
II "A Survey of the Northern and Northwestern Lakes" 17
III Mission Completed 43
IV The Intervening Years 67
V A New Plan 85
VI The Most Complete and Accurate Charts 109
VII Maps by the Ton 137
VIII Fresh-Water Research 157
Epilogue 189
Appendixes 191
A List of U.S. Lake Survey Commanding Officers By Tour 193
B U.S. Lake Survey Chief Civilian Engineers 195
C Articles Of Agreement - April 23, 1859 197
D U.S. Lake Survey Printing Technology 199
E Bibliography Of Selected Papers Published By U.S. Lake Survey Staff, 1959-1976 211
F U.S. Lake Survey Office Locations 213
Explanation of Footnotes 217
Notes 218
Glossary 249
Bibliography 260
Index 272
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