Measuring America

by Andro  Linklater, Walker & Co., 2002, ISBN0802713963, 320 pages.

This is an excellent and easy to read book about the personalities and events influencing the colonization of America with emphasis on the original methods of surveying and distributing virgin land. This original method was known as Metes and Bounds resulting in oddly shaped parcels and contested boundaries.  The Public Land Survey Act helped eliminate some of those problems in the early 1800′s.  The book gives a revealing history of the development and introduction of standardized weights and measures both in America and throughout much of Europe.  The author’s insight into the interrelationship of both the well known and not so well known personalities that laid the foundation of many of today’s scientifically accepted principles makes for informative and sometimes amusing revelations.

Chuck Gray
From Society’s June 2003 Newsletter