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NOAA's Office of Coast Survey Web Site

NOAA's National Geodetic Survey Web Site

NOAA Corps Web Site

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Visit the NOAA Photo Library for historic and contemporary images of surveying and geodetic work.

* Historic C&GS Album

* Geodesy Album

Banner - the coast and geodetic survey - the beginning
NOAA’s roots are planted in this oldest of American science coast survey logoagencies. The Coast Survey was authorized by Congress and President Thomas Jefferson in 1807. From the Coast Survey has flowed much of the structure and the manner of conducting modern American science. The Coast Survey was founded by Ferdinand Rudolph Hassler, a Swiss immigrant, who built an embryonic Coast Survey from the ground up. He brought together mathematicians, cartographers, geodesists, metrologists, hydrographers, topographers, sailors, laborers, and administrators and molded them into a coherent organization having the goal of surveying the coast of the United States. During the evolution of this organization, it became the first United States Government agency to collect masses of geographic information, develop means to process that information, and produce products for the safety and welfare of the citizens of our Nation. The Coast Survey was the first Government agency to develop mathematical models for predicting future states of geophysical phenomena such as tides, currents, and geomagnetic declination. It was instrumental in the formation of the Smithsonian Institution and the National Academy of Sciences and the establishment of their early policies. It was the first Federal science agency to fight many of the political battles involving the proper place of science in a democratic society. Join the Coast Surveyors as they build the foundation of American physical science….
drawing of ferdinand hassler

The Coast Survey - 1807 to 1867
A history of America's first science agency and NOAA's oldest ancestor.

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NOAA Corps and the Coast and Geodetic Survey
Many elements of NOAA and its commissioned officer service, the NOAA Corps, are direct descendants of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey (USC&GS), the oldest scientific agency in the U.S. Federal Government.
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100th Anniversary of the Coast & Geodetic Survey
Address delivered on April 6, 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson on the occasion of the 100th Anniversary of the beginning of field work within the United States Coast Survey.

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150th Anniversary of the Coast & Geodetic Survey

Address delivered by President Dwight David Eisenhower on the occasion of the 150th Anniversary of the founding of the United States Survey of the Coast, the original name of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey.

Publication of the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), NOAA Central Library.

Last Updated: October 6, 2009 9:28 AM

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