Steve Stevens wrote:
One of the reasons may be for your acreage being stated as 225 and
calculated as 241 is called slope. You are plotting on a flat surface and
the land was probably sloped in one or more areas. We must keep this in
mind especially when lines do not meet and acres do not calculate exactly.
Explanations given for areas having errors in old deeds have included
that most of the calculations were done long hand, on paper using
ordinary math. The process of figuring an irregular piece required the
mathematical determination of a number of triangular pieces to be
subtracted from an arbitrary rectangle drawn which encompassed the piece
on various sides. ( Hard to explain without the picture that is worth a
1000 words.)The process required solving of square roots which result in
some truncation of calculations. (How many of you can remember how to
do this long hand?!!!) Thus, simple math errors were common.
Secondly, and even more commonly affecting accuracy, is the fact that
ground measurements were accomplished by dragging the poles, chains,
tapes, etc. over ups and down and around trees, etc. Hence, the given
lengths, and the given bearings weren't that accurate. When field
measurements didn't mathematically make a closed figure, the surveyors
arbitrarily made them do so in most cases so that the piece made sense.
Plotting projects very commonly require some deviation from acceptance
of given figures and a requirement of 100% accuracy. One should never
worry, or knock yourself out trying to figure exactly why things don't
plot with total accuracy using calculators and computers. Just make
some assumptions and see how it fits with other data and adjoining
descriptions. Compromises will be necessary. Here in Pennsylvania, it
has never been settled exactly where the Mason-Dixon line should really
be, and for the northeastern counties there is also unsettled data
regarding the line which marks their southern boundaries. So, it is
easy to see how one property can have an unresolved line or two.
The difference between 255 and 241 is about 7 percent, I wouldn't make
much of that kind of error.