Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Ohio Land Grants

Yesterday, I wrote about the book, How the States Got Their Shapes by Mark Stein, and commented on the Ohio Western Reserve of Connecticut. The territory that became the State of Ohio was pieced together from lands surveyed and sold by the federal government, private individuals, and by the states of Virginia and Connecticut.

Since parts of the state were surveyed at different times, Ohio was divided into areas called survey "districts" or "land grants."

Map from the OHGenWeb Project

In addition to the Western Reserve, the "Fire Lands" were a gift from the state of Connecticut to citizens who had property destroyed by the British during the American Revolution, the "Virginia Military District" was intended to be given to Virginia's veterans, and the "Refugee Tract" was given to Canadian refugees who had helped the American colonies during the Revolutionary War. See Ohio History Central for more detail.

These details are imporant not only for historians, but also genealogists. When tracking the birth, death or property of an ancestor during the period before Ohio's statehood, it is imporant to be able to identify the territories that eventually became the different counties. Concidentally, Shawna, the Genealogy Librarian at my library shared with me some maps she drew in grade school:

I have already sent these fine maps to the Hand Drawn Map Association for inclusion in that collection.

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At Tuesday, October 28, 2008 , Blogger jhunterj said...

One of my favorite books (and one I've read aloud to the kids) is "The Bounty Lands" by William Donohue Ellis. It deals particularly with the claiming of some of these grants.

At Tuesday, October 28, 2008 , Blogger Cartophiliac said...

...and my library has it. I'll check it out. Thx

At Tuesday, October 28, 2008 , Blogger Will said...

So I've been following this blog for a little while, and now I have a request. For the '88 presidential election, some magazine had a map that showed a clear correlation between Bush v. Dukakis votes and Coke v. Pepsi drinkers. Any idea where I could get a hold of it?

At Tuesday, October 28, 2008 , Blogger Cartophiliac said...

I would love to see that map. I hope another of my readers can point us in the right direction.


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