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REPORT OF THE SURVEYOR GENERAL.
OTTAWA, 27th January, 1888. A. M. BURGESS, Esq., Deputy Minister of the Interior,
Ottawa. SIR, -I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of this branch of the Department of the Interior for the year 1887:
As compared with former years, there has been a great decrease in the field work, most of which is now confined to British Columbia. In Manitoba and the North-West Territories the surveys are generally so far in advance of settlement that there would be no object in extending them further.
The operations in the Province of Manitoba consisted of the survey of block and township outlines, five sub-division contracts, one exploration, and the location of a public highway.
The block oatlines survey is in charge of Mr. Edgar Bray. The work lies between Lakes Manitoba and Winnipeg, in the vicinity of the proposed line of the Hudson's Bay Railway, the object of the survey being to permit the sub-division of the lands as soon as they are required for settlement. Owing to the nature of the country it was thought advisable to wait till winter before commencing the work, and it is due to this circumstance that no report of progress has yet been received from Mr. Bray.
Mr. J. H. Brownlee was instructed to survey township outlines in the vicinity of Lake Dauphin. Unfortunately, as he was on his way to the lake, he met with a severe accident while loading a cart, and was incapacitated from work for several months. He was replaced by Mr. W. A. Small, D.L.S. I have not yet received any report from the latter, and I am unable to say what progress bas been made.
Five sub-division contracts were given out as follows:
Mr. J. W. Fitzgerald had the sub-division of Townships 13 and 14, Range 11, east of the Principal Meridian. These bad not yet been surveyed when visited by the Inspector.
Mr. P. T. C. Dumais is to sub-divido Township 14, Rango 10, and Township 13, Range 11, east of the Principal Meridian. The country being wooded, he was allowed to do the work during the present winter.
Mr. R. C. McPhillips sarveyed a part of Big Island in Lake Winnipeg, and also completed some townships at the mouth of the Red River. He is still at work.
At the request of the Commissioner of Dominion Lands, Mr. J. E Woods laid out wood lots in Townships 12, Ranges 12 and 13, west of the Principal Meridian. The survey has been satisfactorily completed, and the returns of the work received.
The last contract was given to Mr. Walter Beatty, and covered two townships adjoining Lake Dauphin. The work has been completed and the returns recoived. This section of the country is now attracting much attention. It is well wooded and watered, and the soil is excellent.
No accurate survey having over been made of Lake Winnipegoosis, it was decided to send an exploratory party to do this. Mr. J. I, Dufresne was given charge of the
expedition. He was provided with two wooden canoes and a crew of four men. I Tegret to say that only the west side of the lake has been surveyed; when he reached the northern end, Mr. Dufresne had to return on account of cold weather. Beyond supplying an accurate plan of the lake, the exploration has not elioited any new information respecting the country.
Pursuant to a requisition of the Government of the Province of Manitoba, survey of Main Street, Winnipeg, was made by Mr. Jos. Doupe, D.L.S., the object being to establish legally the boundaries of the street. Mr. Doupe was guided in his work by the city by-laws relating to the matter, and I am glad to say that the survey has proved satisfactory to all parties interested.
NORTH-WEST TERRITORIES. The location of the public highways, as in former years, has formed an important part of our work Hitherto the great difficulty that we had to contend with was the opposition of settlers to allowing the roads to cross their lands, and much of the surveyor's time was wasted in useless discussions. We have now arranged that our surveyor, or the Inspector of surveys, accompanied by a representative of the Lientenant Governor, is to visit the settlers wberevor difficulties are anticipated and complete arrangements with them before going on with the survey. This system has been found to work well and to save much trouble.
The trails in the vicinity of Calgary were surveyed by Mr. T. D. Green, and those near Prince Albert by Mr. J. L. Reid.
Five survey contracts were given out, as follows :
A re-sarvey by Mr. A. Sproat, of some townships sub-divided by Mr. F. Murphy, has been in progress for the last two years, and is now completed. The original survey was found defective and was not accepted.
Mr. Arthur St. Cyr is now surveying the boundaries of the Rocky Mountains Park at Banff. As might be expected from the nature of the ground, the progress of the work is very slow.
Mr. C. F. Miles has been engaged during the summer on the survey of the Mounted Police reserves io the Territories. The rations, assistance and transporta tion required for bis work were furnished by the Mounted Police, from whom he obtained also all
the information required concerning the reserves. Mr. F. W. Wilkins was, at the request of the Methodist Church Missionary Society, detailed to survey the lands occupied by their missions. Most of these being close to or inside Indian Reserves, the assistance of the Indian Department was necessary in order to avoid complications with the Indians. Mr. Wilkins surveyed during the season the missions of Saddle Lake, Victoria and Morleyville.
BRITISH COLUMBIA. Five survey parties were engaged on sub-division surveys in British Columbia, It is quite impossible to devise a system for making surveys by contract in such a country ; so they are all made by surveyors paid by the day.
In New Westminster District, Mr. A. F. Cotton was engaged on sub-division and miscellaneous work during the summer ; he was somewhat delayed by high water in the spring, and owing to the heavy timber near the coast could only make slow progress afterwards.
In Kamloops District, we had two sub-dividers, one on the north and the other on the south side of the Thompson River,
Mr. Jas. F. Garden was on the north side, and his work covered about the same groand as last year, consisting merely of the extension of former surveys. Similarly,
Mr. Thos. Fawcett, on the south side of the river, worked between Spence's Bridge and Little Shuswap Lake. As pointed out by them in their reports, the only industry of this district at the present time, is stock raising, notwithstanding the fact that, with irrigation, it is one of the most fertile parts of the Dominion. This state of affairs cannot be expected to last very long; as a consequence, the subject of irrigation is now attracting considerable attention. From the nature of their occupation Messrs Fawcett and Garden have been able to collect much valuable information on the subject, which will be found in their reports.
Farther east, Mr. John McLatchie was sub-dividing in the valleys of the Eagle, Salmon, Spellamcheen and adjoining rivers. Since the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway, a large number of settlers have come to this part of the country, principally to the Spellamcheen and the Okanagan valleys, where they are reported to raise magnificent crops.
Mr. P. R. A. Belanger bad instructions to plant the section or quarter section corners nearest to the railway, from the summit of the Rocky Mountains westwards, the object boing to furnish points of reference for any future surveys. He was also to survey the claims of squatters wherever found. He did this as far as Leanchoil
, when it was found necessary to detail bim to make a survey of a town site at Illecilliwaet. On completion of the latter, he resumed the former work and located the claims near Golden, Moberly, Donald and Revelstoke.
Mr. J.J. McArthur, who has already been employed on exploratory surveys in the mountains, was again at the same work this year, but on å somewhat different plan. In addition to the usual surveying instruments, he was supplied with a small camera, specially fitted for the parpose. It was intended that he should do the survey work as usual with the ordinary instruments, and plot the details of the plans from his photographs. He mapped in this way a part of the railway belt west of the summit of the Rocky Mountains.
Mr. W. S. Drewry was similarly engaged in New Westminster District; onfortunately, the smoke was so dense all summer that he could not commence work antil September, or do more than a survey of Lake Harrison,
The plans of these explorations are now being prepared here, under my immediate supervision, and although they are not yet complete, I am glad to say that the results so far achieved fully confirm my anticipations. Instead of the rough and imperfect sketches which such explorations generally furnish, we will have, without extra cost and with but little extra office work, complete maps of the country, which, if made with the usual methods, would absorb very large sums of money.
These exploratory, parties are quite inexpensive, consisting, as they do, of the surveyor, two men, and a few horses for transportation. The information which they procure is necessary for the extension of the regular surveys and for other purposes; in many cases, in the mountainous country, this is the only survey that will over be made.
During the whole of the summer forest fires have been prevalent along the railway line in British Columbia; the smoke was a great impediment to surveying operations.
EXPLORATION OF THE PELLY OR YUKON RIVER Until last year tbe part of the North-West Territories adjoining Alaska had never been visited by regularly organized parties under instructions from the Canadian Government, our information concerning the country being derived from reports of travellers or from foreign sources. The recent gold discoveries on the tributaries of the Pelly or Yukon River baving directed the attention of the public to this region, it was decided to undertake a thorough examination of its resources. The expedition was in charge of Dr. Dawson, Assistant Director of the Geological Survey, and consisted of several parties, one of which, under Mr. Wm. Ogilvie, D.L.S., received instructions from this office. To the latter was particularly entrusted the task of mapping the river and approximately detining the point where the 141st Meridian intersects the Yukon River. This Meridian is the International Boundary between Alaska and Canada. It was calculated that the time of the arrival of Mr. Ogilvie at the boundary would be so late in the fall that he could not make the necessary astronomical observations at that point, and be in time to return to the coast before the frost, so it was decided to let him winter there, An indirect advantage will be gained by enabling him to commence exploring earlier next summer, and to seo places which he could not reach from here in one summer. He was provided with two large wooden canoes, built at Peterboro', each weighing about 100 pounds. Canvas decks could be fitted on for rough weather and removed for loading and anloading. The regular crew consists of two mon in each canoe.
In Jane last he reached Chilkoot Iolet in Alaska and commenced his survey at one of the United States Coast Survey Stations. He then crossed Taiya Pass, & distance of 18 miles, to Lake Lyndeman the head of the Lewis River. Over this pass, at an altitude of nearly 4,000 feet, he had to transport his two canoes, his numerous astronomical and surveying instruments, some of thom very heavy, and eighteen months' supplies for his party. With the help of Indians this was successfully accomplished. He now built a large boat for traneporting the bulk of his supplies and continued the survey with the two canoes.
He will winter in the vicinity of Belle Isle. Next spring he will start for the mouth of the Mackenzie River by way of the Porcupine River and Fort Macpherson and ascend the Mackenzie to Fort Chipewayan, connecting with his own survey of the Peace and Athabasca Rivers.
It was proposed to make astronomical observations corresponding to those of Mr. Ogilvie, at two places, Kamloops and Ottawa, so that if anything interfered with the observations at one place, sufficient data could be obtained from the other one. Unfortunately, as will be seen from Mr. King's report, the weather at Kamloops was cloudy, and the arrangements for observing at Ottawa could not be carried out. The value of Mr. Ogilvio's astronomical work is therefore very problematical.
The determination of latitudes and longitudes was in charge of Mr. W. F. King, Chief Inspector of Surveys, with Mr. O. J. Klotz as the other observer. The work had previously been brought east as far as Winnipeg and it was intended to connoot this year with the Atlantic seaboard, without which connection no use can be made of the results so fur obtained. I regret to say that the arrangements for effecting this connection could not be carried out, and the time of the observers had to be occupied in fixing the positions of Wapella, Kalmar and Port Arthur.
Mr. Ogilvie having taken with him one of our astronomical transits, a new ono was ordered but did not arrive in time for the summer's work, so Mr. King had to take our large altazimath.
The use of such an instrument for time observations is open to the objection that the direct measurement of the inclination and collimation errors is a troublesome process. These values may be obtained, as they have been by Mr. King, from the normal equations, but then these equations contain seven unknown_quantities, & number wbich is not calculated to inspire confidence in the result. There are no proper arrangements here for making this direct determination, and Mr. King will have to go to one of our central observatories, Kamloops or Winnipeg, to do it.
Mr. King's report gives a very clear exposition of the methods and processes employed; the residual errors to which the results are liable are submitted to an able and thorough investigation.
In Mr. Klotz' report will be found a description of our telegraphic switch board; it has proved a great convenience.
INSPECTION AND CORRECTION OF SURVEY8.
This work is under the direction and supervision of Mr. J. S. Dennis, Inspector of Surveys. He bad two fully equipped survey parties under Messrs. John McAree and A, Driscoll, and five sub parties, each consisting of a surveyor and one man, The