BLM California News.bytes 
News.bytes Extra, issue 533

General Land Office Anniversary Commemorated at Mule Days

The bicentennial of the General Land Office was commemorated by the BLM at the annual Mule Days celebration in Bishop, California May 24 and 25.  A replica of a 19th Century GLO surveyor’s camp gave visitors a chance to view antique surveying equipment and learn how the GLO surveyed 1.8 billion acres of public land across the United States.

The display also featured information on the 150th anniversary of the Homestead Act, which was administered by the GLO and the BLM.  Visitors picked up souvenir “deeds” to their public lands and kids could receive apprentice surveyor certificates, both imprinted with a facsimile of the original GLO stamp.  Posters and bookmarks celebrating these historic anniversaries were also very popular. (text continues below)

a man in historical outfit looks through an old surveying instrument

Both State Director Jim Kenna and Smokey Bear stopped by the display and greeted visitors.  The display was staffed by Greg Hill from the California Desert District, assisted by Kirstin Heins of the Bishop Field Office.  Greg, portraying a GLO surveyor, also rode on the Bishop Field Office’s mule-drawn fire wagon in the Mule Days parade, along with State Director Jim Kenna, and Field Manager Bernadette Lovato.

a man in period costume stands at a display of historical photos, instruments and information
Smokey Bear and firefighters stop by the historical booth

- Greg Hill, BLM Central California District (5/30/12)

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 533 -- To subscribe to News.bytes, send an e-mail to: mailto:Join-Newsbytes@List.ca.blm.gov OR visit our News.bytes subscription page.