The Rod and Block Sizes

The main way that I was able to correct the GIS map was through the utilization of historical standards for town planning. The basic unit for laying out block, lot and street sizes for centuries, was the Rod. It became standardized in 1625 by Sir Edmund Gunter. This unit can be broken down as follows:

1 Rod = 16.5 Feet

1 Chain = 4 Rods = 66 Feet

1 Furlong = 10 Chains = 40 Rods = 660 Feet

1 Acre = 1 Chain x 10 Furlong

1 Mile = 8 Furlong = 80 Chains = 320 Rods = 5280Feet

These units were the basis for many early towns and villages in the United States and Great Britain. Orwigsburg is no exception to this rule and so it is no coincidence that the original lots, blocks, streets, and limits of the town are exact multiples of the Rod.

Remnants of this mode of subdivision can be seen all throughout the town when examined carefully. Because of this pattern, I was able to correct the GIS map on a grid.

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