Grants to Land Companies and Railroads
To encourage settlement of large tracts of land, many colonies and states allowed land speculators, often organized as land companies, to purchase large tracts of land for resale to settlers. Records of these transactions may be difficult to obtain. They may have remained in private possession, or have been deposited in a state, local, or private archives or historical society. Some have also been published. The Family History Library has copies of some of these records (especially the published sources) such as the Susquehannah Company Papers. Land company records are generally listed in the Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under [STATE] - LAND AND PROPERTY.
Railroads When the railroads sold or transferred parts of their land grants to individuals those sales were usually recorded in the appropriate county land office.
The most common form of railroad land grant was made in a checkerboard pattern along the line of the first tracks.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. "Land and Property." United States Research Outline. Salt Lake City, Utah: Intellectual Reserve, Inc., 1988, 2002.
- Wade E. Hone, Land and Property Research in the United States (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1997), 153.