Secretary Daniels Presents State Capitol Exhibit on Land Surveying

Secretary Daniels Presents State Capitol Exhibit on Land Surveying

Secretary of State Charlie Daniels today announced the opening of the summer State Capitol exhibit, Lines on the Land, which celebrates both the art and science of land surveying as practiced in Arkansas for almost 200 years.

The exhibit features images from the archives of the National Geodetic Survey’s archives, plus a generous selection of surveyors’ equipment, both vintage and modern.

Lines on the Land demonstrates that while the profession’s tools and, to some degree, techniques have changed, its emphasis on accuracy and precision has remained constant.

Woven throughout the exhibit are photographs of surveyors doing their exacting work in fields, atop mountains, being blown about in exposed towers or standing waist-deep in snake-ridden Mississippi flood water.  One notable artifact on display is a brass and silver early 19th-century theodolite, a telescopic sighting device capable of measuring angles with geodetic accuracy.  Other standout items include an ornately-engraved American surveyor’s compass, a hundred-link engineer’s chain once used to accurately lay out distances, and a phosphor bronze meter bar.

The exhibit coincides with the rededication of the state’s Zero Milestone, a marker installed on the Capitol’s east Promenade in 1932 to promote state highway construction.  The milestone was removed several years ago after an act of vandalism.  The state’s surveyors relocated it, with the consent of the Secretary of State’s office, to the grounds of the Arkansas Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors across from the Capitol grounds.

Lines on the Land has been prepared with the assistance of the U.S. Department of Commerce/National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/National Geodetic Survey, the U.S. Department of Transportation/ Federal Highway Administration, the Pulaski County Public Works Department, the Arkansas Department of Agriculture/State Land Surveyor’s Office and private collectors.

The exhibit may be viewed in the State Capitol’s first-floor galleries through August.  The Capitol is open to the public from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on weekends and holidays.