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Editor's Points

September 1, 2006
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One of my favorite books is the Dr. Seuss book "Oh! The Places You'll Go!"

In addition to the distinguished Seuss artwork, the content carries the reader through situations that are eventful and memorable-showing how life is a journey for each of us.

Less than a year after I started at POB, I hiked Grandfather Mountain, the highest peak in the Blue Ridge mountain range of North Carolina. Here is where I found my first survey marker.


One of my favorite books is the Dr. Seuss book "Oh! The Places You'll Go!"

In addition to the distinguished Seuss artwork, the content carries the reader through situations that are eventful and memorable-showing how life is a journey for each of us.

I cherish the places and paths I've taken in life. Admittedly, I never imagined I'd work for several years on a surveying publication, but here it is, seven years-plus and counting, and I remain your editor. And I, like you, find myself locating surveying monuments while on business and leisure trips. In fact, I sent a picture of one of my most treasured finds in Zion National Park in Utah to Rhonda Rushing at Berntsen International to be considered for her new book, Lasting Impressions, due out this month.

As Dave Doyle, chief geodetic surveyor, National Geodetic Survey, writes in the book's foreword, Rushing's book "shows that survey monuments take on many forms. Regardless of their size, shape or composition, they are almost always the result of physically and mentally challenging work by professionals dedicated to accurately locating pieces of the Earth."

The title and cover image of the book comes from Sergeant Bradley Limbo of the 109th Engineer Group SDARNG, Rapid City S.D. While he was stationed in Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, Limbo and friends left behind several markers "for future units to build on," leaving a "lasting impression."

Rushing's goals with the book are to honor the work and legacy of surveyors and to elevate the profession of surveying. Her dedication to the making of the book has been furiously exciting. "It's been a learning process and exciting," she says. "I'm hoping it'll be an uplift and something of value."

Value is one word to apply to the idea she's implemented. Treasure is another. The compilation of stories that will be included in Lasting Impressions is vast, interesting, thought-provoking, charming and fascinating.

In my review of a mere tenth of the book that it will become (a proposed 192 pages in full four color), I enjoyed stories about the Jefferson Pier Stone, Mount Rushmore National Monument (and the trade of surveying by three of our presidents), an 1887-set North Carolina-Virginia state line monument (with a rich history behind it), the magical find in a deserted area of Gobbler's Knob in Rainier National Park by LSIT Gregory Dussault, finds in locations different than where they were intended to be set, and a marker set underwater. Stories have been submitted by the fresh and new to the experienced and seasoned.

Several entries in the book reflect the fact that many surveyors like to drop historical dates and specific coordinates into conversation. Many monuments reveal older names of our government agencies and numerous stories about the monuments found are just as interesting as the marks themselves. With headings such as "Caving's Holy Grail," "An Eerie Setting" and "On the Wrong Border," readers are sure to be intrigued and entertained by the stories that accompany the gripping pictures.

One great aspect about the book is that not every entry was submitted by a surveyor or soon-to-be surveyor. This wide offering supports another of Rushing's goals: "I would like this book to be of interest to a wider audience," she says. "Family, colleagues, friends"¦ and other professions including historians, geocachers, hikers, mountain climbers."

A glossary of terms will be included in the book, some provided by nonsurveying "laypeople." Submitters of story entries have been asked to provide as much information as they can about the monuments and their surrounding areas. In talking with Rushing, her excitement about the book has done anything but wane: "One of our stories, with many photos," she says, "is of the survey of Mt. McKinley. There is also a great story by Brianne Bernsen of Texas, who was the first female to survey on the North Slope of Alaska at the age of 19." She beams, "That work they're doing may be there for hundreds of years in a tangible way."

The work you do in the places you go as surveyors, expert measurers, supporters of our country's landscape, and as adventurers, is amazing and inspiring. As seen in Rushing's book, surveyors have covered every corner of the Earth and everything in between.

If you cherish your chosen profession as I imagine you do, you'll want to have a copy of this coffee table-style book in your home and/or office-to reflect on the "lasting impressions" of surveyors everywhere, and to conjure up memories of the places you've gone.

To order your copy of Lasting Impressions, call 800/356-7388 or go to www.lastingimpressionsbook.com. It will also be available through POB's bookstores at www.pobonline.com and www.aecstore.com.

The next place I'll go-with anticipation-is motherhood. Beginning this month, I'll be gone for a little while, leaving the publication in the capable hands of Managing Editor Kimberly Jensen and Associate Editor Regan Grant. I look forward to seeing the products they'll produce for you, which will undoubtedly include stories and articles on where numerous surveyors have gone.

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