The land had to be surveyed by the office of the Surveyor General of the United States before it could be homesteaded. A crew headed Edwin Richardson surveyed the area. On September 4, 1861, they proceeded north along a route that would become 51st Avenue S. At Mead Street they crossed a trail that went from Duwamish Lake (Lake Washington) to Seattle.
At Dawson Street they entered a "Wet Valley" and crossed a brook, leaving the valley at Pearl Street. The surveyors described the land as "land rolling Soil second rate Timber Fir Cedar Hemlock and Maple. Undergrowth the same with alder, gooseberry and Fern."