Monday, February 4, 2013

Mappy Monday - Thanks For The Tip

Last week a Genealogy Tip of the Day mentioned that many of the Bureau of Land Management Tract Books were now available for searching online through (1).  This was a tip I definitely wanted to follow up on since my Great Grandfather Peter Peterson Myren had been a Dakota Territory homesteader.

Previously I had searched the General Land Office Records on the Bureau of Land Management's web site and found information about Peter's homestead.  The BLM's database showed that his 160 acres were in Trail County, North Dakota and indicated the township (145N), range (050W) and section (2).  I also learned that Peter was issued the land patent on Feb 10, 1882.  I felt confident using a database compiled by a US government agency on that agency's web site, but I was interested in looking at the digitized images on Family Search.  After all, it is always good to get as close as possible to the original record.

The tract books on Family Search are not indexed, but I was able to find the entry for Peter's property in a short time.  I began by selecting the Dakota Territory books to search then opening five or six volumes (volume numbers follow the tract number sequentially).  Basically, I looked at the first written page of a volume until I located the volume with tracts located in the 145N050W area.  Below is the entry for his homestead.

Bureau of Land Management Tract Book, Dakota Territory, volume 65, page 16
From the tract book image I also learned that Peter had paid  $10 for his 160 acres, and the actual date of sale was October 21, 1879.  It even listed the receipt number for this transaction. The column "By Whom Patented" provided some new information.  The note indicates that under the [Land] Act of June 15, 1880, the land was recorded as a cash sale of $382 on April 13, 1881.  Now I want to learn more about the Land Act of June 15, 1880 and why the BLM database listed the patent issue date as Feb 10, 1882.  Once again, new information leads to new questions.  On it goes ...

If you are not already a regular subscriber to Genealogy Tip of the Day, I recommend you take a look at this blog.  Each day's post is usually just a few sentences, enough to point you to a good resource, a research technique, or a new way to look at a puzzling issue.  Check it out here

1.  (c) Michael John Neill, "Genealogy Tip of the Day,", 1 Feb 2013.

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