History of Surveying and Measurement


7 volumes covering Three Milleniums of Measurement of Earth

Volumes I-V: Notes on the History of Determining the Size and Shape of the Earth Using Meridian Arcs

Volume VI: Meridian Arcs in East & Southern Africa with Emphasis on the Arc of the 30th Meridian Volume

Volume VII: Connection Between the Struve Geodetic Arc and the Arc of the 30th Meridian


To read more about the 7 volumes covering Three Milleniums of Measurement of Earth, click here.

FIG Publication No. 50: History of Surveying. FIG Report 2010
This publication as a .pdf-file (34 pages - 1.288 MB)

History collections from members


The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Geomatics ’99, Proceedings of the Geomatics Division Conference, University of Nottingham, 10 - 12 September 1999
Volume I - 50th Anniversary Programme

Journals and periodicals

From Misura della Base Trigonometria della via Appia. A Secchi, 1858. Courtesy Jan de Graeve.


The are no journals devoted solely to matters of interest in the history of surveying and measurement. There are however isolated technical papers in various journals in the fields of surveying, mathematics, astronomy and navigation. The only regular column that we are aware of is that by Silvio Bedini in the American surveying journal Professional Surveyor. This column started in 1985 and is still going on a bi-monthly basis. Among journals that contain occasional articles of interest are:

In addition the Archives or Proceedings of the conferences of a range of organisations can be a fruitful source for research.