Public Land Survey System (PLSS)
The original survey system for all states in the United States excluding the original thirteen colonies, Hawaii, and Texas. This system specified that a rectangular land survey be performed based on one or more arbitrary origins in the state. The north/south line of the origin was a meridian of longitude, while the east/west line was to be perpendicular to the meridian. The state was then divided into six-mile squares (36 square miles) called townships. Witching townships, areas were divided into one-mile-square areas called sections. Subdivisions of sections then become the basis for legal descriptions of land. These subdivisions of sections were called aliquot parts, e.g., the northeast 1/4 or the northwest 1/4 of the southwest 1/4.