About Coast Survey

Since President Thomas Jefferson asked for a survey of the coast in 1807, Coast Survey has been the nation’s nautical chartmaker. Using the water depths and other data acquired by NOAA hydrographic surveys, Coast Survey creates and updates over a thousand charts covering 95,000 miles of U.S. coastline, publishes the United States Coast Pilot, and responds to navigational emergencies in U.S. waters and at our nation’s ports.

All approved U.S. nautical charts, regardless of who sells them, are created and updated by the Office of Coast Survey.

A NOAA Corps officer traditionally leads the Office of Coast Survey, and the director simultaneously serves as the U.S. National Hydrographer. Coast Survey’s director is Rear Admiral Gerd Glang.

Most of the Coast Survey staff, cartographers, and physical scientists are located at 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910. Navigation managers are stationed in port areas around the U.S., and navigation response teams are deployed, based on set priorities, to areas needing surveys. Additionally, the Atlantic Hydrographic Branch is located in Norfolk, Virginia, and the Pacific Hydrographic Branch is in Seattle.

2 thoughts on “About Coast Survey

  1. Owning a piece of history can be intriguing, can’t it? Marker numbers are not unique to a single marker. That U.S. Coast & Geodetic Survey marker could come from anywhere. The number may appear on markers in any state and, in fact, in several counties of any state. If you have any additional information that could give some clues on where it came from, you’ll want to contact our sister agency, the National Geodetic Survey, at ngs.infocenter@noaa.gov.

    BTW, NGS folks tell me that people should not remove marks without notifying NGS. If NGS agrees the mark should be removed, they will ask the person to return it to NOAA. If the mark cannot be returned, the person should send in information about the mark’s destruction, along with a photo of the mark with the name or number filed off.


  2. I recently purchased a very mangled survey marker. It says: it is a U.S. Coast Guard & Geodetic Survey

    The number on it is 2349 can you tell me anything about my marker?


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