Manitoba's Uncommon Sites and Sights
Spotlight #42-S --- Prime Meridian Rd at the 49th parallel of latitude

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Your contributions will appear beside the image or at the bottom of this page under 'Viewers' Comments" .

Is this the location where the surveying of the Canadian West began in 1871,
or was it part of the surveying that began in 1874?

Image #1 -- The camera was facing south-east. -- Are statements (a) & (b) correct?

(a) The trench is situated on the Canadian side of the international boundary between Manitoba and North Dakota.
(b) This boundary marker lies on the 49th parallel & is parallel to the trench.
(c) Prime Meridian Rd ends just outside the left side of this image.
(d) A road exists [just outside the left side of this image] that is north of and parallel to the trench.

Image #2-- On the north (Manitoba) side of the boundary marker is recorded "CONVENTION OF LONDON". Also appearing is "A. LAIDLAW & CO".

What is known about this company?

Image #3 -- The south-eastern part of this field (a section of land -- one square mile) is south of the boundary marker. The red arrow points to Prime Meridian Rd.

The survey marker (inside the blue rectangle) appears to be due north of the boundary marker. -- A closer view (poor quality image) of the marker is shown on the top-left of the image. -- The bottom-left image reveals the text on the survey marker.

This survey marker is approx 30 yards from the boundary marker. -- This distance is approx. equal to a measure of 1 & 1/2 chains, that is, 99 feet.

Is this distance correct & was it created to allow for the trench and the road allowance that runs along the south side of the field?

My assumption is that the designation of this field is Township 1 Range 1 Section 1 West of Prime Meridian.

Image #4 -- This survey marker is situated on the north-east corner of this field.

The survey markers under Images #3 & #4 are the only survey markers that I could find in this area, that is, on either side of the road allowances.

Images #5(a)(b)(c) -- This post and plaque are located in the Pembina State Museum in Pembina, N.D. -- On the side of the marker is the inscription 'Convention of London'.

It is stated that the boundary markers shown below were placed one mile apart. -- Were they situated at the same location as the current markers that coincide with corners of the sections of land on the Canadian side? -- Were they replaced with the current markers? -- If so, when?

Viewers' Comments

Dave Kryschuk (?-location)

When you see a legal survey marker, you need to look down and find the actual pin, which has the section/township/range stamped onto the top of the pin. Sometimes it might be just beneath the surface. The marker post is just a marker to identify the actual pin.

Here’s a link to what the brass caps on the pins look like:

Here’s a good link explaining the Dominion Land Survey:

Jerry Vonau (?-location)

"A Laidlaw & Co" is the name of the foundry that cast the markers.

Here is a good read.

Convention of London 1818