Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858

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Born in Worcester, Massachusetts, June 13, 1792; received a good education; was for some time an engineer in Erie, New York; came to Michigan, 1822; member of territorial council, 1826-27; settled in Washtenaw County, 1824; engaged in mill-building and local surveying, 1824-33; County surveyor, Macomb Co., 1831-34; Postmaster of Mt. Vernon for 24 years; invented solar compass; surveyed Upper Peninsula 1840-27; discovered 20 beds of iron ore, 1844-46; representative from Macomb County, 1853-1843; died August 18, 1858. (from Appleton. Mich. Biog. ; Dict. of Amer. Biog) (blue index cards)

From the description of William Austin Burt correspondence, 1840 (Detroit Public Library). WorldCat record id: 319063411

Surveyor and inventor of the solar compass.

From the description of William Austin Burt notebook, 1841. (University of Michigan). WorldCat record id: 34420477

Burt was born in Massachusetts but lived in Michigan from 1824 until 1858. He served in the Michigan legislature and worked as a deputy U.S. surveyor in Michigan from 1833 to 1853. Among Burt's inventions were the typographer in 1829 (a predecessor to the typewriter) and the solar compass, a surveying tool used in the Michigan survey. While surveying in Michigan Burt discovered one of the largest iron ore deposits in the country in what is now Marquette County, Michigan.

From the description of Collection on William Austin Burt. (State Historical Society of Iowa, Library). WorldCat record id: 79477655

Burt (1792-1858) was a member of the Legislative Council of Michigan Territory representing Macomb County, 1826-1827, and a land surveyor in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa. He was the most prominent citizen of Mount Vernon (Mich.) and its first post master, beginning on Dec. 19, 1832.

From the description of Collection, 1839,1952. (Clarke Historical Library). WorldCat record id: 41536875

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Burt, Flora,. Flora Burt family papers, 1820s-1980s. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Canfield, Augustus, d. 1854. St. Mary's Falls Ship Canal : map, plans and specifications, 1852-1858. State Archive of Michigan
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. William Austin Burt correspondence, 1840 Detroit Public Library, Detroit Main Library
referencedIn Burt, Horace Eldon. William Austin Burt: inventor. Marquette County Historical Society
referencedIn George Henry Cannon papers, 1833-1915 Bentley Historica Library University of Michigan
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Staff notes from the Houghton Geological Survey, 1838-1848. State Archive of Michigan
referencedIn Boyum, Burton H. 1919-2005. Burton H. Boyum History of Surveying Collection, 1980-1994. Michigan Technological University, J.R. Van Pelt & Opie Library; Michigan Tech
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Boundary line between Michigan and Wisconsin, as run and established by William A. Burt, D.S. in the summer of 1847, under the 4th section of the act of Congress of 10th of August, 1846 : showing also the connection therewith of the township line-surveys in Michigan / certificate of approval by Lucius Lyon, Surveyor General. State Archive of Michigan
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Report on geology in the Upper Peninsula. Marquette County Historical Society
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Papers, 1828-1858. Marquette County Historical Society
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Map of a survey and re-measurement of several lot lines in the town of Mackinaw, Michigan / Wm. A. Burt, surveyor. State Archive of Michigan
referencedIn Sperry Rand Corporation. Remington Rand Division. Records, 1830-1975 (bulk 1920-1955). Hagley Museum & Library
referencedIn Flora Burt Family Papers, ca. 1830s-1960s Bentley Historica Library University of Michigan
referencedIn Lucius Lyon papers (1770-1934, bulk 1833-1851) William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Geological map of a district of township lines in the northern peninsula of Michigan / surveyed by Wm. A. Burt. State Archive of Michigan
creatorOf Holcroft, John. Map and profile of the canal at Sault Ste. Mary. State Archive of Michigan
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Township no. 47 N. range no. 45 W. Mer. Mich. / township lines Wm. A. & Austin Burt ; subdivisions Wm. Burt. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Alpheus Felch Papers, 1817-1896 Bentley Historica Library University of Michigan
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Reports of topographical and geological surveys, 1845-1848. State Archive of Michigan
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. William Austin Burt notebook, 1841. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Collection, 1839,1952. Clarke Historical Library
referencedIn Frimodig, David M. (David Mac). William Austin Burt - Surveyor. Marquette County Historical Society
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Letter to Elisha Duvelle. Marquette County Historical Society
referencedIn Searls, Jonathan, 1791-1841. Papers, 1812,1967. Clarke Historical Library
creatorOf Thayer, George W. Lucius Lyon papers, 1770-1934, bulk 1833-1851. William L. Clements Library
creatorOf Burt, William Austin, 1792-1858. Collection on William Austin Burt. State Historical Society of Iowa, Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Boyum, Burton H. 1919-2005. person
associatedWith Burt, Austin, 1818-1894. person
associatedWith Burt, Flora, person
associatedWith Burt, Flora, collector. person
associatedWith Burt, Horace Eldon. person
associatedWith Cannon, George Henry, b. 1826 person
associatedWith Duvelle, Elisha. person
associatedWith Edward Weber & Co. corporateBody
associatedWith Felch, Alpheus, 1804-1896 person
associatedWith Frimodig, David M. (David Mac) person
associatedWith Haines, E.S. person
associatedWith Holcroft, John. person
associatedWith Lyon, Lucius, 1800-1851. person
associatedWith Michigan. Geological Survey Division. corporateBody
associatedWith Michigan. Lands Division. corporateBody
associatedWith Searls, Jonathan, 1791-1841. person
associatedWith Sperry Rand Corporation. Remington Rand Division. corporateBody
associatedWith Thayer, George W. person
associatedWith Thayer, George W. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Mackinaw City (Mich.)
Wakefield (Mich.)
Wisconsin
Michigan
Upper Peninsula (Mich.)
Mackinac Island (Mich.)
Michigan
Upper Peninsula (Mich.)
Michigan--Mackinaw
Wisconsin
Upper Peninsula (Mich.)
Mount Vernon (Mich.)
Macomb County (Mich.)
Michigan--Upper Peninsula
Subject
Surveyors
Surveyors
Weather
Geology
Geology Maps
Inventors
Real property
Solar compass
Occupation
Activity

Person

Birth 1792-06-13

Death 1858-08-18

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Ark ID: w65723rn

SNAC ID: 41059763