On a ranch 18 miles southeast of this marker a bronze plate
marks the most important spot on this continent to
surveyors and mapmakers. Engraved in the bronze is a
cross-mark and on the tiny point where the lines cross
depend the surveys of a sixth of the world's surface.
This is the Geodetic Center of the United States, the
"Primary Station" for all North American surveys. It
was located in 1901 by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic
Survey. Later Canada and Mexico adopted the point
and its supporting system as the base for their surveys
and it is now known as the "North American Datum."
What Greenwich is to the longitude of the world,
therefore, a Kansas pasture is to the lines and
boundaries of this continent. It must not be confused
with the Geographic Center of the United States, which
is 42 miles north, in Smith County.