Sawyer's Letter on Cusack's Property

Colorado Springs, Colo., December 20, 1913

Mssrs. Purcell and Burns, Attorneys

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Dear Sirs:-

In accordance with your order and Mr. Cusack’s letters, I have made the survey at Cascade. As I found it necessary to do more work in investigations and running lines than I expected, a brief report of the work in detail seems advisable.

Preparatory Work. I took notes of all government, County and private records of surveys in this vicinity that I could find, with notes of Cascade Townsite, also abstract notes and description of the various tracts in the Cusack and adjoining properties. I also took with me a copy of the private notes of Robert Finlay, which he gave me before his death. Mr. Finlay was instrument man on the party which made the original government survey in Twp. 13 – 68, about forty years ago, and in the employ of the surveyor who had the contract to subdivide and set the section and quarter section corners in this Township. Finlay’s private notes show that only about one half of the corners in this Township were set although the filed notes read as if they were all set. The correct notes were also changed where they didn’t suit. These imaginary and garbled notes went to Washington without Finlay’s affidavit, and in some way were accepted and became the official notes. This will explain one of the difficulties I had in finding and restoring some of the old corners I needed to make a correct survey.

1st Day. We searched in snow for N.W. Cor. Of Sec. 26; found the original “B.T.” (bearing tree) and restored the old corner, destroyed years ago, using Finlay’s notes and setting marked stone and iron stake. Local men had been using the B.T. for the corner thus throwing the section lines out of true position. We went to the N.1/4 Cor. Of Sec. 26; reset old stone and iron stake at fence corner; then measured the north line of N.W.1/4 Sec. 26, which distance I needed by triangulation.

2nd Day. We found original stone at N.E.Cor. Sec 26 by B.T. from Finlay’s notes. The old stone fallen over and partly covered with disintegrated granite. Reset stone and iron stake for corner. I judge that former surveyors did not find this corner as the fence at this place is 58 feet off line. Found original stone at E.1/4 Cor. Of Sec. 26; loose and sliding down the slope. Reset stone with iron stake at fence corner. Line cast from this point, as marked by fence, for one-fourth mile is all right.

3rd Day. Found S.E.Cor. of Sec. 26. Original stone in stone mound in good condition. Established east line of S.E.1/4 of Sec. 26 across Ute Pass and the heights to the south, setting sights to be used in survey later. Ran east from E.1/4Cor of Sec. 26 along fence.   Found distance to fence corner practically one-fourth mile (1,319 feet). Set middle point of this line and set points south on ridge for east and west lines of 20 acre tract.

4th Day. From N.E.Cor. Sec. 26 ran one –fourth mile easterly into Sec. 25 and set corner with iron stake and bearing trees to establish east line of Cusack property. Connected this point with fence corner one-half mile south from Cusack’s east line, making this line parallel to the east line of the N.E.1/4 Sec. 26.

5th Day. As the Government surveyors set no corners on the north and east line of Sec. 23 by which I could plan the work in Secs. 23 and 24, I was obliged to make further investigations in Sec. 23. From the ¼ Cor. Between Sec. 23 and 26, measured roughly north one-half mile by fences to the center of Sec. 23, then west one-half mile to find the West ¼ Cor. Of Sec. 23. I found old bearing tree but no stone. Then west to S.W. Cor. Sec. 23 and ran north one-half mile, searched for 1/4Cor. but found none. Position of Corner by B.T. doesn’t correspond with property lines as fenced.

6th Day. Ran west line of Sec. 23 on to the north for a mile and found original stone at the N.W.Cor. of Sec.23 on steep mountain side in bad condition. Reset stone in stone mound, took local bearing and left sight pole. Went to S.W.Cor. Sec. 23 and took angle to get course of west line of Sec. 23. West to ¼ Cor. south of Sec. 23 and took angle in south line of said section. Went to S.E.Cor. Sec. 23 and established east line of said Section in its relation to the west line according to Government notes.

7th Day. Ran north on the east line of Sec. 23 as established a half-mile and set the ¼ Cor. between Sections 23 and 24, a stone in stone mound with bearing trees. From this point, ran east on approximate center line of Sec. 24, parallel to south line of Sec. 23

8th Day.Continued line one-fourth mile east of ¼ Cor. and set iron pipe in stone mound for N.E.Cor. of Cusack property (N.E.Cor. Stickles tract). From this point, ran south, parallel to east line of S.E.1/4 of Sec. 23 for one-half mile to corner already set. From this point ran south parallel to east line of N.E.1/4 Sec. 26.

9th Day. From fence corner one-fourth mile east of quarter corner, common to Secs. 25 and 26, ran south and established points on east line of 20 acres (Moses’ tract). The slope down into Ute Pass on this line is so rough and precipitous that it seemed unsafe to use the instrument on it, so I projected the line to the south side of the Colorado Midland Railway and from a position near Long’s road had the line staked down the opposite or north side, setting iron pipe in stone mound on north side of traveled road in Ute Pass. As the running of the south line of the 20 acres (Moses’ tract) would require considerable extra work, and did not seem necessary at this time, it was not done. The S.W.Cor. of this 20 acre tract is cut off by the railroad and county road.

10th and 11th Day. Started survey of ten acre tract along French Creek. Found no corners to start from. Found old cuttings on parallel lines at right distance apart which seemed at first to be on old survey lines, but as these lines did not include the creek at the south end of tract, I presume it was a trial survey that was changed by office calculations to fit the valley and never changed on the ground. I next went to the 1/16th corner and ran out the tie line of 1,029 feet called for in the deed, with magnetic variation of 12 degree - 30’. Corrected this line to make the distance fall on the south line of the right-of- way of the Colorado Midland Railway and set iron stake for the N.E.Cor. of tract. Ran both sides of ten acre tract, staking for fence and setting corners.

12th Day. Went to N.E.Cor. of Stickles’ tract and ran south on east boundary, cutting out line, blazing and staking for fence. Went to N.E.Cor. Sec. 26 and measured the half mile west to ¼ Cor. between Sec. 23 and 26 which finished the survey.

All exterior lines ran were cut out, blazed and staked for fencing. I would have been greatly aided in my work if I could have had an abstract of the different tracts of this property. Not having this I have had to gather information from the abstract office, county Clerk’s office, the Assessor’s office, the County Surveyor’s office and the various records in our own offices. Having gathered all this information from the records and the field work, it has seemed best to place as much as possible of it on a new map, which contains all the information on the old map brought up today and much additional matter. This ought to be valuable to Mr. Cusack for future reference when he gets an abstract of the whole property. The topography of this map is accurate where it has been surveyed and closely approximate in other places.

I have been in doubt as to what Mr. Cusack meant in his letters to Mr. Purcell and Mr. Miller about the Moses tract east of the house and near the Bell Crossing. In August, 1899, Mr. Cusack bought of W.E. Moses, a tract of about fourteen acres (including County road and north half of railroad right-of-way), marked “M” and “Moses Tract” on our map. In March 1902, he conveyed this tract to Mrs. Cusack. Mr. Moses, after selling the N.E.1/4 of the S.E.1/4 of Sec. 26, relinquished the remainder of this original 160 acres to the U.S.Government, excepting the E.1/2 of the N.W.1/4 of the S.W.1/4 a 20 acre tract, which his reserved. When I made the survey, I was under the impression that this was the tract referred to by Mr. Cusack, as it is nearer the Bell Crossing than the other tract. It was also marked on the Assessor’s map which he sent us. But if Mr. Moses reserved this 20 acre tract for Mr. Cusack, and has conveyed it to him, then Mr. Cusack has forgotten to record the deed as it is still assessed to Mr. Moses. Then he should have reserved the west 20 acres rather than the east 20 acres, as it joins the Cusack lands and has better frontage on the County road then the other which lies mostly on the cliffs and is almost inaccessible.

This map and report have been delayed longer than I intended by other matters and in order to get all the information I needed to make the whole matter perfectly clear to Mr. Cusack and your law firm.

When the Lincoln Highway becomes a part of the trans-continental route for automobile travel from the Atlantic to the Pacific, Ute Pass will become a great thoroughfare, and I believe all of Cusack’s frontages and lines on this road will be much more valuable in the near future.

As the most of our bill represents cash outlay and the board bill has to be paid by January 1st, if Mr. Cusack will give the matter his attention at his early convenience it will be greatly appreciated.

Hoping I have given you all the information and stakes upon the ground needed at this time, and that service has been entirely satisfactory, I am,

Yours very truly,


County Surveyor, of Sawyer and Garstin, Engineers and surveyors.

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