Scope and Content Note

The series consists of topographic survey maps made as part of a plan to build a proposed storage dam on the Sacandaga River at or near Conklingville, Saratoga County. The maps show the river and its watershed and details of the lands and property that would be affected by the damming and flooding. They also provide elevations and benchmarks and mark the flow line of the resulting reservoir.

A flowage line is the contour or line around a reservoir, pond, or lake or along a stream corresponding to some definite water level. It is generally used in connection with the acquisition of rights to flood lands for water storage purposes.

The sheets show the following: contour lines (interval of 20) and elevations; village, town, and county boundary lines and especially the shoreline of the proposed reservoir in relation to the affected village/town; territory within the Sacandaga River watershed along with various creeks, ponds, islands, swamps, woodlands, and marshes; benchmarks and survey offset lines from the river; location of several proposed dam sites in Conklingville and other existing wooden dams; proposed flow line (elevation 770); details of land and property within the flood zone, including the names (heirs) of property owners and various lots and patents (e.g., "Great Lot 50" or "Kayaderosseras Patent"); outlines of specific buildings, sometimes giving the type of structure (e.g., church, school, hotel, cemetery, saw mill, town hall); streets, highways, and railroad lines, especially the Fonda Johnstown and Gloversville Railroad (F.J.G.) and the Delaware and Hudson railroads; the interruption of the Fonda Johnstown and Gloversville Railroad by the proposed flow line and the proposed relocation of the railroad line; and scattered pencilled annotations of natural features (e.g., "Depression" or "Ledge Rock") or explanatory remarks that apparently represent revisions.

The maps are hand drawn on architect's linen in colored inks, with the river and building outlines also shaded in color. Each map has a title, usually identifying it as the work of the State Water Supply Commission and specifying the authorizing legislation. Scale is given in feet, and is usually either 100 feet to one inch or 1 inch equal to 400 feet. Each map has a directional symbol that also gives the variance from true north. Maps often give the name of John R. Freeman, C.E., and the date January, 1908. They sometimes also carry the signature of the engineer in charge of the surveys. The date of the annotations is not clear although one map is marked as "Checked" with initials and the date April 30, 1912. Maps generally measure 63 x 94 cm within neat lines. Maps are arranged by sheet numbers which appear in the upper and lower right corners. Also present are case and drawer numbers that apparently represent locations where these maps were once kept.

At the beginning of the series there is an index map to the topographic sheets. It shows the proposed reservoir, its size in square miles, and the site of the proposed dam as well as the railroad lines, the proposed flow line and the latitude and longitude of the coverage area. It has a ruled scale of feet and one of statute miles. It is dated January 1909 and bears the name of John R. Freeman, C.E.