Determining if Tamme Had a Homestead the Old Fashioned Way

In the “Right Tamme in the Wrong Place,” the 1895 Illinois will of Tamme Tammen referenced property in Dawson County, Nebraska. Tamme’s nephew and others from the same area of Germany had homesteaded in the same general area and I suspected that Tamme did as well. So I searched the Nebraska homestead records using:

Nothing for Tamme. It’s possible that he’s in the index and that his name is mangled. Names on federal land patents are usually pretty close to the “real thing” as the person obtaining the property wanted their deed made our correctly to the right person. Our ancestors weren’t stupid.

I could play with the search parameters for the location of Tamme’s property, but there’s a better way that will take a little bit longer. That way is to use the actual tract books from the Bureau of Land Management. Those books are not “magically indexed” online, but have been microfilmed and many are available digitally at FamilySearch. Those books are organized geographically (based upon property location) and were kept by the Bureau of Land Management to know who had filed claims on what property and what the status of those claims were. Since I know where Tamme’s property was located in Dawson County, Nebraska (the legal description is in his will), using the books will be no problem.

So that’s what I’ll do.

We will have an update after I’ve done that.


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