HISTORY INDEX>Definition of Township

Townships of Land

Townships are the largest subdivisions of land run out by the United States Surveyors. In the governmental surveys Township Lines are the first to be run, and a Township Corner is established every six miles and marked. This is called "Townshipping."
After the Township Corners have been carefully located, the section and quarter section Corners are established. Each Township is six miles square and contains 23,040 acres, or 36 square miles, as near as possible to make them. This, however is frequently made impossible by, (1st.) the presence of lakes and large streams; (2nd) by State boundaries not falling on Township lines; (3rd) by convergence of Meridians or curvature of the earth`s surface; (4th) by inaccurate surveys. Each Township, unless its one of the exceptional cases referred to, is divided into 36 squares, which are called sections. These sections are intended to be one mile or 320 rods square and contain 640 acres of land . Sections are numbered consecutive from 1 to 36.

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