PROGRAMS AND PLANS - Latitude-longitude for Well Numbers

                          GEOLOGICAL SURVEY
                      WATER RESOURCES DIVISION
                         WASHINGTON 25, D. C.

                                               October 25, 1963
                                                      4056 0001


To:       District Chiefs and Staff Officials (GW)

From:     Chief, Ground Water Branch

Subject: PROGRAMS AND PLANS - Latitude-longitude for Well Numbers

We have received a number of memorandums from the field in
response to GWB memorandum 64.8 of September 24, 1963, on the same
subject.  By far the majority of writers are in favor of the
uniform numbering system.

Many writers offered constructive criticism of the proposed
system, for which we are grateful.  The items mentioned most often
are the reversion of the normal geographic order of latitude-
longitude and the string of digits without interruption.

Several writers suggested that the latitude be presented before
the longitude as is normally done in geographic locations.  USGS
water-level reports were checked to note the degree to which
latitude-longitude is used in locating wells.  This was done to
see if the benefits derived from use of longitude-latitude would
be offset by the added work required to convert to this system.
We were surprised to learn that more than 20 States use latitude-
longitude, many of them reporting well locations to seconds.  We
are, therefore, pleased to accept the recommendations of field
personnel and revert to the normal geographic order of latitude-

Some writers suggested insertion of periods and slashes to make
the number more meaningful.  Column headings will be printed on
the well-data punch cards which will show the breakdown of
degrees, minutes, and seconds of latitude and longitude.  For
field use and in the 5-year water-level reports, a period may be
used before the last digit to separate sequential numbers from the
longitude; the hemispheric designation (N or S) provides a break
between latitude and longitude.

The recommended changes will affect the well numbers as follows:

            GWB Memorandum 64.8             This Memorandum

Texas         1021535314512N3               314512N1021535.3

New Jersey    0742510402130N1               402130N0742510.1

We appreciate the spirit in which you have accepted the well
numbering system and your assistance not only in improving it but
also in making it more acceptable for field use.

                                   (s) A. H. Lang
                                   for O. M. Hackett

WRD Distribution:  A, B3, S3, FO3, SL