Early Settlers in Kentucky–Part III

Virginia Land Records in Kentucky and Ohio

These records are not conveniently located in one archive with one index.  Nor are they complete, yet, online through one archive with one index.  They are scattered around–and they still exist.

Richard Clough Anderson Collection.Anderson was Registrar of the Virginia Land Office and his son-in-law, Allen Latham assisted him at Chillicothe, OH to 1822.

  1. Illinois Historical Survey, University of Illinois, Urbana.  Ledger Book A (as written on spine and in archive inventory.)  Ledger Book 5, Cash Account Book, 1784-1799.  There is an alpha list of names with year and page # in “Virginia Land Grants in Kentucky and Ohio, 1784-99,” Clifford Neal Smith, National Genealogical Society Quarterly 61 (1973): 16-27. 10,000 items, large ledgers.  These include records from both the French and Indian Wars and the American Revolution.
  2. Archives Division, Virginia Library, Richmond VA.  2,500 items.

Virginia Bounty-Land Warrants. Western Reserve Historical Society Collection, Cleveland OH, 5 linear feet of archival material, 4,000 warrants.

Virginia Land Office, Kentucky.  16,000 bounty-land warrants, Kentucky.  Land grants in the Virginia Military District of OH.  Published:  Kentucky Land Grants. 2 vols.  1925.  Willard Rouse Jillson, Filson Club Publications, #33-34 and Federal Land Series, Vol. IV:  Grants in the Virginia Military Land District. 1982-86.  Clifford Neal Smith,  American Library Association.  Also published Catalogue of Revolutionary Soldiers and Sailors of the Commonwealth of Virginia to Whom Bounty-Land Warrants were Granted for Virginia Military Services in the War for Independence. Edited by Samuel M. Wilson.  Reprint of 1913 Year Book of the Kentucky Society of the SAR and 1917 Year Bookof Society of Colonial Wars in Kentucky.  1994.  Southern Historical Press, PO Box 1267, Greenville SC 29602.  Includes new index and both warrants and surveys by bundle.

These documents have now been put online by the Kentucky State Archives:  http://www.sos.ky.gov/land/search/

Early Kentucky Land Records, 1773-1780.1992.  Neal O. Hammon.  Filson Club Publications.  A new readingof the original warrants, surveys, and military claims.  Using computer property-mapping software, Hammon also provides land ownership maps for these early claims.  Hammon has also written a series of articles on the early land records and settlers of Kentucky.

Kentucky Land Lotteries, 1789-1800.  Advertised in newspapers throughout the East, offered 40,000 acres for sale in 150-acre lots for $15.00 per ticket.

These compilations and original documents list watercourses, including the larger bodies of water into which smaller streams and rivers emptied.  You can coordinate this data with topographical maps showing exactly where the lands are located.  With a GPS system in your vehicle, you can navigate to the lands themselves.

The records provide the name of the grantee and identifying terms to separate and distinguish persons of the same name in the same set of records.  The clerk had to keep the men straight, and you can use the same key words to identify your ancestors in other records as well.

Many of  these records are also microfilmed so you can read the original words yourself.  This course of action I recommend whenever possible.  Some times misinterpretation of property description, spelling of surnames and locations can lead you astray.  Besides there is an excitement in the original records that cannot be duplicated by a printed extract. Your favorite Kentucky genealogist, Arlene Eakle  http://www.arleneeakle.com

About Arlene Eakle

I trace your family tree; or, teach you how.
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