Due to numerous requests, we are offering a new section of this course. The structure will be a little bit different, but the content will all be the same. Registrations can be processed here.

Land records can contain significant genealogical clues. These records can also be confusing for researcher who is unfamiliar with their structure, purpose, terminology, and organization. Starting on 2 deeed-exampleDecember, we’ll be starting a series of my “United States Land Records” course due to popular demand.  I’ve used land records extensively in my thirty-some years of family history research and have used them to solve a variety of genealogical research problems. Join us and discover more about this wonderful set of records.

Attendees will download the actual lecture to vie
w at their leisure several days before the discussion session to follow. This allows attendees to view the presentation without connectivity issues and they can stop and pause the presentation as they need to. Discussion sessions
will be the time to ask questions “live.” Registration is limited to the first twenty-five students who register.


  • Week 1–discussion of different types of deeds, terms and definitions, record keeping practices and procedures, types of land ownership, and women’s property ownership changes over time.
  • Week 2–discussion of metes and
    bounds legal descriptions, property descriptions in metes and bounds states, pre-Federal land records, and general research strategies in those states.
  • Week 3–discussion of legal descriptions in federal land states, property descriptions in federal land states, and an overview of federal land records (bounty lands, cash land sales, homestead claims, etc.).
  • Week 4–online demonstration of actual land record searches using indexes and records selected from online materials at FamilySearch.
  • Week 5–online demonstration of search techniques and approaches to the federal land patents hosted at the Bureau of Land Management website.


Homework is optional–there’s no grade.

  • Week 1–two local land records
  • Week 2–two metes and bounds deeds
  • Week 3–research problem in a federal land state
  • Week 4–a “can you find” it problem where records needed are available free online at FamilySearch.
  • Week 5–no “homework,” but problems will be posted to our discussion forum a week before the lecture.

Schedule–discussions (attendance is not required as they will be recorded and available for download):

  • 6 December 8:30 pm. central time–discussion 1
  • 13 December 8:30 pm. central time–discussion 2
  • 20 December 8:30 pm. central time–discussion 3
  • 27 December  8:30 pm. central time–discussion 4
  • 3 January  8:30 pm. central time–discussion 5

Registration is only $40. All handouts are included and there is one for each lecture. These are new presentations created just for this course. Students also get download copies of the lectures for their personal use.bounty_land_large_center




10 Responses

  1. December is a horrible time of the year to have this especially for wives, mothers, grandmothers, and greatgrandmothers or all of the above.

    • There is a link on this page–where it says “Registrations can be processed here.” The links don’t display too well in this blog format and I’m working on that.

    • There is a link on this page–where it says “Registrations can be processed here.” The links don’t display too well in this blog format and I’m working on that.

  2. Hi, a day late, but not a dollar short. I just signed up for the class. I hope I can do a catch-up on week one before the next class.

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