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Government Survey System:

The land survey system adopted by the u.s. government in 1785 and based on the geographic north-south lines of longitude (meridians) and the east-west lines of latitude (parallels). Each region of the country was assigned a specific meridian and parallel as a reference point; these special meridians were generally referred to as principal meridians, while parallels were referred to as base lines. The land was divided into a grid of 24 miles square by additional parallels known as correction lines, and meridians known as guide meridians. Additional imaginary east-west township lines and north-south range lines divide the land into six-mile square townships. Each township is divided into 36 one-mile square sections.

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