Early Texas Surveyors
By Linda Kirkpatrick
The history of surveying travels back to early time. The Egyptians recorded plots of land as far back as 3000 B. C. What is astounding to me is that the Great Pyramid is only a few inches out of square. The Bible notes, “Thou shalt not remove thy neighbor’s landmark, which they of old time have set, in thine inheritance which thou shalt inherit…”
Lewis and Clark, Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln were all surveyors whose work helped map the early United States. The Spanish were some of the first in Texas.
Early Texas surveying was unusual and varied to say the least. The terms, “a cigarette’s length” or “half a day’s walk,” recorded in field notes are somewhat inaccurate.
Juan Antonio Padilla, land commissioner of Mexico, had to have a survey recorded before Austin’s colonist could claim their land.
Cornelius “Neal” Alexander Roberts married Mary Benton about 1767. I am a descendant of theirs.
The mid- and late-1700s was a dangerous time for habitants in Southwest Virginia, near Chilhowie and the Clinch River.
A mixture of long hunters, British colonists, and American Indians all contended for their piece of the tree-covered mountains and clean water. Constant violence, and successive attacks by Indian hunting and war bands, laid unrest upon the settlers.