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Re: [jacksongenealogy] Availability of a Web site containing pre-TVA Gunterville watershed survey maps

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  • cagle8185@aol.com
    Now I must correct my own mistakes.? After the last message I found out Hales Bar was built in the early 1900 s and must have been taken over by TVA at a later
    Message 1 of 7 , Oct 6, 2008
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      Now I must correct my own mistakes.? After the last message I found out Hales Bar was built in the early 1900's and must have been taken over by TVA at a later date. Sorry for any misunderstanding.

      Bill Cagle

      -----Original Message-----
      From: cagle8185@...
      To: jacksongenealogy@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Mon, 6 Oct 2008 3:50 pm
      Subject: Re: [jacksongenealogy] Availability of a Web site containing pre-TVA Gunterville watershed survey maps

      Not being critical ,of so much hard work, but just trying to keep the history correct.? TVA built Hales Bar and Guntersville Dam in the late 30's and Hales Bar had a crack in the dam and was under constant repair for many years.? This area from Hale Town to The Big Suck, in the Tennessee River, has always been unstable. Some 30 years later TVA elected to move down stream to the area of Nickajack Cave and build a new dam because they could not control the unstable land at Hales Bar.

      This cave area was the home and hunting ground for our Native Americans and has a history of its own.? To keep the water level the same as the old dam much more land had to be flooded. This included the cave and Native American land that had been taken over by the white people.?

      When I was a young man we would exprore the cave and pick up artifacts in the area.? We were some of the last folks to have this privilage because it was flooded and now underwater.

      This is history in my own lifetime and is the facts.? Hope you understand and do not feel I am being critical but just trying make sure your work is correct, because after you print something folks take it to be the fact.

      Bill Cagle

      -----Original Message-----
      From: nettiebau1952 <abradford@...>
      To: jacksongenealogy@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Sat, 4 Oct 2008 12:29 pm
      Subject: [jacksongenealogy] Availability of a Web site containing pre-TVA Gunterville watershed survey maps

      I apologize for the length of this append, but I am writing to offer
      you access to a Web site that my husband and I created to help you
      locate your family homes and properties that bordered the Tennessee
      River and the creeks that empty into it in Marshall and Jackson
      County on pre-TVA maps:


      This Web site will be available at least three months. During this
      time, I hope to fully debug it and perhaps write a better
      introduction to the maps. After a while, I will create a CD with this
      set of maps on it that you can purchase for a nomial fee from the
      Heritage Center in Scottsboro, with all proceeds returned to the
      Heritage Center. The CD will provide a faster way to access all the

      I invite anyone with surveying expertise to write a better
      explanation than the one I have written or anyone related to these
      families to send me corrections to the information. Please send me
      transcription errors or broken links, but not changes to names. I am
      trying to reproduce the names faithfully as I find them on the maps,
      though there are TVA-initiated spelling errors.


      As a genealogy researcher, I have always been frustrated that many of
      the family sites I would like to visit are under water. Recently, I
      was pleased to stumble upon a fragile old book that contained
      surveyers' maps of the pre-TVA river, and even more important, the
      families who owned the land. The maps indicate the 1934 shorelines
      and show elevations and the TVA's estimation of what parts of this
      land will be under water after the Gunterville and Nickajack Dams are
      closed and the area is flooded.

      There are about 100 maps and the legends to interpret them. They are
      color-coded by land use and show all the elevations and the land that
      the TVA surveyers expected to be covered by water, along with who
      owned the land at the time the damns were built. The locations of
      moved cemeteries can be determined. Original family homesteads and
      their relationship to the creeks and river can be seen.

      These 100 numbered maps are queued to a base page that lists the maps
      by numbered parcels keyed to the township maps, with lots of
      information that a surveyor would understand, but I do not. I turned
      this base page into a clickable image map and then indexed the maps
      by geographical features mentioned and families on each parcel.

      Some of the maps are missing. The maps in Tennessee are not in this
      collection. Scottsboro apparently had too much detail in the area
      between the opening to Roseberry Creek and the BB Comer Bridge for
      that map to be included, for example. Some are just inexplicably
      missing. If you click on a parcel for which there is no map, you will
      see a window that says that map is not part of this collection.

      How to use the maps

      You can find locations on the maps visually by knowing where you are
      in the counties. You can refine that location by passing the mouse
      pointer over a numbered sectors and waiting a few seconds until a
      description of what is covered in the sector appears in a flyover. I
      am open to changing the descriptions that I have provided for better
      ones, so if you know a familiar name for an area that I did know
      know, send it to me. My email address is on the introductory page.
      Be sure and give me the number of the map that the description
      corresponds to.

      The base page is only the image map with flyovers. The photos were
      taken at First Monday by my husband in the 1970s. If you click on the
      words Jackson County or Marshall County in the middle of the base
      page, or on the maps of the counties at the bottom, the overall map
      remains for reference but links are added to the page specific to
      that county. You see first the numbered maps for that county with an
      alphabetic list of the names on the map. Scroll further and you see
      an alphabetic list of all names for all maps in that county that are
      hyperlinked to the map where they appear. Some names appear multiple
      times because they are found on multiple maps. If you scroll further,
      you find the geographical (creek names, for example) or man-made (a
      church, cemetery, or railroad line) features on the maps. These are
      also hyperlinked to the map where they appear. If this same feature
      can be found on a modern navigational map for the Tennessee River, a
      link to the modern map is provided. Clicking on that link will pop up
      another browser instance showing the selected modern map.

      To understand the symbols and color used on the map, the legend for
      the map set is available by clicking the legend link on the left side
      of the base image map.

      Is your ancestor's property listed on the TVA maps?

      The easiest way to determine this is to use the alphabetic name index
      by county and look them up. If there is a name that is close and the
      location is correct, look at the map. I may have made a transcription
      error, or the TVA surveyors may have made a spelling error.

      Relating a location on a TVA historical map a modern navigational

      I was actually surprised how many of the landmarks on these maps from
      the 1930s are still found on modern navigational maps. My husband got
      the most wonderful book for $20.00 a few years ago at the Goosepond
      marina: The Army Corps of Engineers: Tennessee River Navigation
      Charts. Our copy was updated January 2000 and I see from their web


      that this book is out of print. However, any of the maps from this
      book can be downloaded and printed from this site, though my Web site
      includes the ones that make up the Lake Guntersville Watershed.
      Simply look on the same feature on both maps and compare them.

      Relating a location on a TVA historical map to a township and range

      I have included the maps of Jackson and Marshall County showing
      sectors and township in this collection. These maps are copied from
      the University of Alabama map site: http://alabamamaps.ua.edu/

      I have added vertical and horizontal lines to made the individual
      townships/range "addresses" easier to locate. An individual range map
      is 36 square miles. The sector is divided into 36 parcels that are 1
      mile by 1 mile, numbered like this:

      6 5 4 3 2 1
      12 11 10 9 8 7
      18 17 16 15 14 13
      24 23 22 21 20 19
      30 29 28 27 26 25
      36 35 34 33 32 31

      So in this map collection, you will see an arrow that makes the map
      true to the township grid, but you will also see several designations
      showing where you are in the township, something like this:

      28 | 27
      33 | 34

      And this set of numbers locates the area you are looking at within
      the township, per the grid I drew above. Every map also contains a
      table that shows you more detailed information that I need help for a
      surveyer to decipher, but I figure these are longitude and lattitude

      There is a good explanation of township and range designations at
      this Web site: http://geography.about.com/library/weekly/aa090897.htm

      There is a way to translate between GPS coordinates and township and
      range designations at this really neat Web site:

      Saving a copy of a map to your computer

      To really study the information on a map, it helps to magnify it. You
      can do that with almost any graphics program, including the native
      Windows Picture and Fax Viewer. Here is how to copy and view a map.

      1. Right click on the image you want and select Save picture as. The
      default Windows location is My Pictures, but you can browse to a
      different location. I usually save to my desktop initially.

      2. Right-click on the icon for the image or its name in Windows
      Explorer and select Preview. This shows the image in the Picture

      3. Click the magnifying glass + and - icons below the image to make
      it larger and smaller, respectively.

      Printing a map

      Print programs are very different, and you are, I'm sure, familiar
      with your own printer characteristics. However, if you have access to
      a printer, anyone can print one of these maps using the Window print

      Right-click on the icon for the image or its name in Windows Explorer
      and select Print. This action launches a wizard that steps you
      through Picture Selection (click the image to print), Printer Options
      (select a printer and define preferences for this doc), Layout (the
      program rotates the image as needed for maximum size), and Finish.
      You can also open any GIF or JPG file with a browser using the File--
      Open File option.

      If you wanted a large image, you could save the map to a USB stick or
      CD and take it to a print service like Kinkos. I have not tried this
      so I don't know that maximum size you could get with decent
      resolution. I am guessing 16 x 20. Most of the images are fairly
      large, though the second set of "out of focus" shots we redid are of
      lower resolution. There is one remaining out of focus map we will
      have to reshoot at a later time.

      Some technical issues

      I have tested the maps on Mozilla and Internet Explorer. My son did a
      spot check using the Safari browser on a Mac. If you are using any
      more exotic browser, I have not tested these environments. Email me
      about any display issues.

      The maps have been processed through Photoshop Elements to clean them
      up, brighten them, up the contrast for readabilty, and correct the
      skew. They were trued to the grid during this process, and saved as
      JPG file.

      I wanted the maps to be high enough resolution to print well, and the
      tradeoff is, they may load slowly. Ann Chambless tested this for me
      with the Scottsboro service provider and found that a typical map
      takes about a minute to download.

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