Research

New York State Engineer and Surveyor Town and State Boundary Documentation Files

Held by the New York State Archives


Overview of the Records

Repository:

New York State Archives

New York State Education Department

Cultural Education Center

Albany, NY 12230

Summary:
This series consists of maps, descriptions, reports, correspondence, and petitions relating to the examination and documentation of various state and town boundary lines. Included are documents relating to boundary lines between the state of New York and the states of Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Jersey. These records reflect the functions of the office of State Engineer and Surveyor, which was responsible for establishing and maintaining accurate boundaries of state owned land.
Creator:
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Quantity:
0.5 cubic feet (including 5 maps)
Inclusive Dates:
circa 1882-1915
Series Number:
A3322

Arrangement

Arranged by state or township boundary line category and therein by relationship between states or towns in question.

Scope and Content Note

The series consists of maps, descriptions, reports, and correspondence relating to the examination and documentation of various state and town boundary lines. The State Engineer and Surveyor was responsible for establishing and maintaining accurate boundaries of state owned land.

Chapter 421 of the Laws of 1887 required the State Engineer and Surveyor to inspect and examine state boundary monuments every three years, and in cooperation with adjoining states, to restore and replace boundary markers. The office also located and preserved maps, field notes, and surveys of work performed under the direction of the State Engineer and Surveyor, and was authorized to survey disputed land in the state's interest. The records reflect all of these functions. Despite the common theme of establishing boundaries, it is unclear why these particular records were brought together.

The records fall into four groups. The first consists of four printed maps showing the boundary line between the state of New York and the states of Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Jersey respectively. They are not annotated, date from approximately 1887, and were prepared to accompany a report of the State Engineer and Surveyor on the boundaries of the state. The maps measure from 20 x 108 cm to 10 x 209 cm.

The second distinct item is a typescript description of monuments on the New York-Connecticut state boundary made on a perambulation of 1915. It is annotated with the dates on which specific stations were described, and with other corrections or details.

The third group consists of descriptions and reports on boundary lines between New York and New Jersey, dated 1912 and 1914. The copy of a report on the examination of the boundary line (1912) is addressed to the State Engineer and Surveyors of both states and is noted "to be filed with field notes". A description of a monument (1914) submitted to provide a field location contains a small hand-drawn pencil sketch. A detailed description of monuments marking the boundary line was made to accompany a joint report of engineers on their examination of monuments in 1912.

The final group contains letters and petitions on disputed town boundary lines, specifically requests to the State Engineer and Surveyor to locate accurate town lines or to settle disputes over boundaries and disputed title to lands (and in one case to mineral rights). The documents date from 1882 to 1892. They involve disputes between/within the towns of Highlands and Monroe, Orange County; Tompkins, Walton, and Hancock, Delaware County; Huntington, Suffolk County; and the Totten and Crossfield's Purchase, Essex County.

Use of Records

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions regarding access to or use of the material.

Other Descriptive Data

Between 1850 and 1902 the annual session laws of the New York State Legislature printed the texts of resolutions of county boards of supervisors establishing towns or altering their boundaries. The resolutions were passed either the same year or the previous year.

Access Terms

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