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U.S. Revolutionary War Bounty Land Warrants Used in the U.S. Military District of Ohio and Related Papers (Acts of 1788, 1803, 1806)
This series of Land Office records has been reproduced as National Archives Microfilm Publication M829. The sixteen rolls of microfilm contain reproductions of warrants dated 1789 to 1833 and related papers dated as late as 1880. All are arranged by date of act and thereunder by warrant number.
A bounty-land warrant was a right to free land on the public domain. During the revolutionary war the Continental Congress promised bounty land as an inducement to military service. For this war and wars in which the United States was engaged during the years 1812 to 1855, the issuance of bounty-land warrants to veterans or their heirs as a form of reward for service was continued. Some states also granted bounty lands for service during the revolutionary war, but the warrants reproduced in this publication were issued by the federal government. Four finding aids to the warrants are reproduced on roll 1.
On September 16, 1776, Congress passed a resolution promising free land in the public domain to officers and soldiers who continued to serve during the revolutionary war or, if they were killed, to their representatives or heirs. The resolution provided that a private or noncommissioned officer would be entitled to 100 acres of bounty land, an ensign to 150 acres, a lieutenant to 200 acres, a captain to 300 acres, a major to 400 acres, a lieutenant colonel to 450 acres, and a colonel to 500 acres. In 1780 the resolution was extended to grant a brigadier general 850 acres and a major general 1,100 acres.
The resolution was implemented by an ordinance passed by the Confederation Congress on July 9, 1788, that authorized the secretary of war to issue land warrants to all eligible veterans upon application. When the federal government was formed in 1789,
the secretary of war retained the responsibility for processing applications and issuing bounty-land warrants, although the Treasury Department was in charge of the public domain and supervised the selection and location of land. The Treasury Department also issued patents, which gave actual title to the claimed land, and in 1812 the General Land Office was established in the department to administer the public lands. The records reproduced in this microfilm publication are those preserved by the Office of the Secretary of the Treasury and later by the General Land Office.
The first series includes U.S. military bounty-land warrants issued under the act of July 9, 1788, which are numbered 1 to 14220.
A warrant gives the date of issuance, the name and rank of the veteran, the state from which he enlisted, and when applicable the name of the heir or assignee. Because a warrant was assignable and was often sold by the veteran on the
open market, a notation on the reverse of the warrant indicates subsequent transfers of ownership from the veteran to heirs or assignees.
Most of the warrants from 1 to 6912 in this first series were destroyed during War Department fires in 1800 and 1814; generally the only existing documents in the files relating to these warrants are a few copies of patents granted for land claims. Beginning with warrant 6913 most of the actual warrants are intact. Those that are missing are presumed to be lost or not surrendered by the veteran or his heirs.
The second series comprises U.S. revolutionary war bounty-land warrants issued under the acts of March 3, 1803, and April 15, 1806. The warrants are numbered from 1 to 272 under the act of 1803 and continue from 273 to 2119 under the act of 1806. A series of eighteen additional warrants issued under later acts is included: 1299, 2314, 2340, 2346, 2359, 2418, 2436, 2442, 2453, 2455, 2458, 2462, 2467, 2468, 2470, 2471, 2475, and 2479. These warrants are in this series although they were issued by authority of acts of January 27, 1835, July 27, 1842, and June 26, 1848.
A warrant in the second series also gives the date of issuance, the name and rank of the veteran, the state from which he enlisted, and the name of the heir or assignee. Most of the individual warrants are present along with a certificate of location that indicates where the bounty land was located in the U.S. military district of Ohio. When there is no certificate of location with the warrant, a legal description of land location is usually provided on the front or reverse of the warrant by a series of numbers and dots, such as 18.104.22.168. indicating lot, quarter section, township, and range. For this series, reference notations have been inserted to indicate if a warrant is missing or was exchanged for scrip.
Finding aids for each of the two series of warrants have been filmed on roll l. For the first series of warrants, which were issued under the act of 1788, the finding aids are identified as the "Index to the Register of Army Land Warrants” and the “Register of Army Land Warrants per Acts of 1796 and 1799."
The index to the register contains entries arranged alphabetically by the first letter of the surname of the warrant holder who registered and located his warrant on land in the U.S. military district of Ohio between 1799 and 1805. An entry also gives the warrant number, the number of acres shown on the warrant, and the page number in the register where the name of the veteran or of the warrant holder is cited.
The register of army land warrants contains entries arranged chronologically by date of warrant registration from April 11, 1799, to March 20, 1805. Each entry gives the registration date, the name of the patentee, and the name and the service rank of the warrantee. Because land could be granted only in quarter townships, warrants are registered in four thousand-acre groupings, and a legal description is provided only for each located quarter township.
The register of warrants and the accompanying index to the register for the first series of warrants terminate their entries in 1805. Some warrants registered and located after 1805 will be entered in the finding aids for the second series of warrants.
For the second series of warrants, which were issued under the acts of 1803 and 1806, the finding aids filmed on roll 1 are identified as the "Index to Revolutionary War Military Bounty Land Warrants Issued Under the Acts of 1803 and 1806" and the "Register of Military Land Warrants Presented at the Treasury for Locating and Patenting, 1804-35."
Entries in the index usually indicate the veteran's name, his warrant number, and the act under which the warrant was issued, and may contain a cross-reference notation to the scrip application number. For those entries extracted from the register, an additional reference is made indicating the page on which the information was found.
Entries in the register of military land warrants are arranged chronologically by date of warrant registration, 1804-35. Each entry provides the registration date; the name of the person presenting the warrant for registration; the warrant number; the name and the service rank of the warrantee; the number of acres shown on the warrant; the location of the warrant by lot, township, and range in the U.S. military district of Ohio; the date on which a patent for the land was received; and the name of the person to whom the patent was delivered. The register and the accompanying index for the second series of warrants terminate their entries in 1835.
In the same record group are several series of related records. A series designated “Applications for Military Bounty Land Scrip” contains applications for exchanging both federal and Virginia military bounty-land warrants for scrip certificates. The application file generally contains the original warrant together with correspondence and other papers.
A second series titled "Virginia Military in the Department of the Interior. Records pertaining to revolutionary war bountyland applications and warrants issued by various states are deposited in state archival agencies.
Twenty-third Institute on Genealogical Research
Bounty-Land Warrants Surrendered to the Federal Government" contains land warrants issued to Virginia veterans by that state for service in the revolutionary war. Warrants in this series were used to locate land tracts in the Virginia military district of Ohio. A warrant file generally includes a surrendered warrant, land survey, power of attorney, certificate of location, an assignment statement, and an affidavit concerning the heirs of the veteran.
A third series contains warrants issued under the act of March 3, 1855, which authorized bounty-land warrants of 160 acres for all revolutionary war soldiers who had served at least fourteen days or who had taken part in at least one engagement. Widows and dependent children of such veterans were also eligible to make application. The act also provided that those veterans who had received a warrant for less than 160 acres under previous legislation could reapply for a second warrant granting additional land to complete a total of 160 acres. The 1855 act was extended on May 14, 1856, to include revolutionary war naval and marine veterans and their widows and dependent children.
Among the cartographic records of the General Land Office is a "Map of the United States Military District in the State of Ohio. Survey'd under the direction of Rufus Putnam, Gl. Survor of the United States." There are also related records in other record groups: in the records of the Veterans Administration, revolutionary war pension and bounty-land-warrant application files; in the War Department Collection of Revolutionary War Records, service records for revolutionary war soldiers; and in the records of the Office of the Secretary of War and the records of the Office of the Secretary of the Interior, correspondence concerning the administration of bountyland matters.
Record copies of patents issued to holders of revolutionary war warrants have been retained by the Bureau of Land Management (formerly the General Land Office)
The Twenty-third Institute on Genealogical Research will be held July 16August 3, 1973 at the National Archives Building. The three-week institute will provide theoretical and practical training in genealogical research through lectures, seminars, and field trips. This year's program will include a number of new features and an increased emphasis on student participation.
The lectures will provide basic background relating to the organization and retrieval of genealogical data, analysis of problems, and procedures involved in determining further research. The formation, content, and use of federal records such as military and pension records, passenger arrival records, and federal land and census records will be explored. Geographical coverage of the United States has been broadened to include all sections of the country and the various depositories and records of genealogical value in each region. Ethnic research will be covered in relation to the settlement and migration of groups within the United States, and specific problems in black, Indian, and Mexican-American genealogical research will be considered. Field trips have been arranged to research facilities in the Washington area and also to one or more nearby state archives.
Enrollment is limited, and those wishing to attend should apply as soon as possible. Application forms and further information are available from Genealogical Institute (NNC), National Archives (GSA), Washington, DC 20408.
Northwest Ordinance that established the American territorial system.
John C. Frémont expeditions at the University of Illinois, the George Washington papers at the University of Virginia, the Henry Clay papers at the University of Kentucky, the papers of the First Congress at George Washington University, the Marquis de Lafayette papers at Cornell University, and the John Marshall papers at the College of William and Mary.
In 1972 two new titles were completed and released by repositories participating in the commission's microfilm publication program: the Pierre Menard collection by the Illinois State Historical Society and the John Pendleton Kennedy papers by the Enoch Pratt Free Library and the Maryland Historical Society.
Robert Gallman of the Department of Economics at the University of North Carolina has been chosen as the new representative of the American Economic Association on the National Archives Advisory Council. He succeeds Harold F. Williamson of the Eleutherian Mills-Hagley Foundation.
The president signed new legislation di. rectly affecting the grant program of the National Historical Publications Commission. P.L. 92-546 raises the grant appropriation authorization ceiling from $500,000 to $2,000,000 per year, extends the life of the grant program through 1977, and enlarges the commission membership by two with representatives of the Organization of American Historians. An authorization law permits a request for funds; an appropriation bill provides funds permitted by the authorization law.
At its May 16, 1972, meeting the commission welcomed a new member, Philip A. Crowl, professor of American history at the University of Nebraska. The commission gave continuing support to ten documentary publication enterprises. Five projects supported by a Ford Foundation grant are the Adams papers at the Massachusetts Historical Society, the Benjamin Franklin papers at Yale University, the Alexander Hamilton papers at the Columbia University Press, the Thomas Jefferson papers at Princeton University, and the James Madison papers at the University of Virginia. Five remaining projects are financed from appropriated funds: the John C. Calhoun papers at the South Carolina Department of Archives and History, the Jefferson Davis papers at Rice University, the Ulysses S. Grant papers at the Ulysses S. Grant Association, the James K. Polk correspondence at Vanderbilt University, and the Booker T. Washington papers at the University of Maryland.
At its September 26, 1972, meeting, the commission gave support to nine continuing projects. Microfilm projects include the Willard Straight papers at Cornell University and the territorial records of New
ico at the New Mexico State Records Center and Archives. Letterpress projects are the Daniel Webster diplomatic papers at Dartmouth College, the papers of the
On September 15, 1972, a portrait of Milton S. Eisenhower by J. Anthony Wills was unveiled and presented to the Dwight D. Eisenhower Library by former Senator Harry Darby and Mrs. Darby of Kansas City, Kansas. Milton S. Eisenhower, his daughter Ruth Snider, Milton S. Eisenhower, Jr., Roy Wilkenson, and Wendell E. Dunn were present at the ceremony.
John Porter Bloom, editor of The Territorial Papers of the United States and senior specialist for western history at the National Archives, has been elected vicepresident of the Western History Association. John E. Wickman, director of the Dwight D. Eisenhower Library, was elected to the association's council. Wickman was also elected president of the Oral History Association. Daniel J. Reed, assistant archivist for presidential libraries, was elected secretary of the American Association for State and Local History.