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Harrison County, Ohio

History & Genealogy

Land Patents

Source: 
History of Carroll and Harrison Counties, Ohio
Chicago: Lewis Publ. Co., 1921

FIRST LANDOWNERS IN HARRISON COUNTY

pg. 195


 

     The first measure providing for the establishment and maintenance of government by the United States in the territory northwest of the Ohio river, was an ordinance passed by Congress on April 23, 1784.  The ordinance was reported by a committee of which Thomas Jefferson was chairman, and contained a clause prohibiting slavery in the territory after the year 1800.  This provision, however, was stricken out before the ordinance was finally passed.  The only important result accomplished under the first ordinance was the beginning of the survey of the territorial lands.
     Congress, having purchased from the Indians at the treaty of Fort Stanwix, Oct. 27, 1784, whatever title the Six Nations had to lands in the valley of the Ohio, now sought to provide for the survey and disposal of the same; and on May 20, 1785, was passed, "An Ordinance for Ascertaining the Mode of Disposing of Lands in the Western Territory."  This ordinance provided that a surveyor should be appointed from each State.
     On May 27th Congress chose as surveyors:  Nathaniel Adams, New Hampshire; Rufus Putnam, Massachusetts; Caleb Harris, Rhode Island; William Norris, New York; Adam Hoopes, Pennsylvania; James Simpson, Maryland; Alexander Porter Virginia; Absalom Tatum North Carolina; William Tate, State Carolina; and on July 18th, Isaac Sherman, Connecticut.  Benjamin Tupper was appointed instead of Rufus Putnam from Massachusetts, as the latter was then surveying lands in Maine, and could not serve.  Caleb Harris and Nathaniel Adams having resigned, Col. Ebenezer Sproat and Winthrop Sargent were chosen in their places.
     The surveyor were to divide the territory into townships, six miles square.  The first north and south line was to begin on the Ohio river, at a point due north from the western terminus of a line that had been run at the southern boundary of Pennsylvania; and the first east and west line was also to begin at the same point.
     It was provided that as soon as seven ranges of townships had been surveyed, the Geographer should transmit the plats of the same to the Board of the Treasury.  The Secretary was then to take by lot a number of townships and fractional townships, both of those to be sold entire and of those to be sold in lots, such as would be equal to one-seventh part of the whole seven ranges, for the use of officers and soldiers of the Continental army.
     The survey was begun in July, 1786, under the management of Thomas Hutchins, the Geographer of the United States.  He started on the Pennsylvania line at the north bank of the Ohio river, and first ran a line west through Columbiana and Carroll counties, now known as the "Geographer's Line," a distance of forty-two miles, setting a post each mile.  Every six miles was a township corner, and from these corners the south line were run to the Ohio river, and the north lines to the southern boundary of the Connecticut, or Western Reserve.  Hutchins began numbering sections at the southeast corner of the township, which was called section 1, thence north to the northeast corner, which was section 6.  Section 7 began at the bottom again, west of section 1, and the numbers were carried up to section 36, which was in the northwest corner.  In Charles Whittlesey's tract on the "Surveys of the Public Lands in Ohio," it is stated that this is the first application in the history of land surveys, of the rectangular system of lots in squares of one mile, with meridian lines and corner posts at each mile, where the number of the section, town, and range was put on the witness trees in letters and figures.  This system of numbering was followed in the survey of the Ohio Company's lands about Marietta, and in the Symmes Purchase.  It was changed to the present system in 1799, by which the numbering of the sections begins in the northeast corner of the township, and proceeds alternately from east to west, and thence west to east.
     The plan originally adopted by Congress for the sale of the lands in the Northwest Territory, proposed to sell it in tracts of two million acres; the second ordinance, in smaller tracts, of one million.  Under the last ordinance, the contract of the Ohio Company, on the Muskingum, and that of Judge Symmes and his associates, between the Miamis, were made, the former for two millions, the latter for one million acres.  By a subsequent ordinance, passed in May, 1785, seven ranges of townships, each six miles square, were surveyed westward from the Ohio river and the Pennsylvania line, which were divided and offered for sale, in quarter townships; first at Pittsburgh, and afterwards in Philadelphia.  Harrison county lines between the western lines of Ranges three and seven, its townships thus being included in the four western ranges.
     In May, 1796, an act was passed by Congress, directing the Surveyor General to cause the public lands to be divided into townships of six miles square; and one-half of these townships, taking them alternately to be divided into sections of one mile square, and the residue into quarter townships of three miles square.  In the year 1800, another law as passed, ordering a portion of these lands to be subdivided, and sold in half sections, of three hundred and twenty acres.  When this law came into operation, land offices were established at Cincinnati, Chillicothe, Marietta, and Steubenville, and a large quantity of the richest and most productive soil was brought into the market.
     Before that time, the tracts of land offered for sale by the Government were so large that men of limited means were unable to purchase.  The smallest tract that could be bought was a section, containing six hundred and forty acres.  Under this arrangement, most of the lands in the present townships of Short Creek, Athens, Green, and Cadiz were entered by the section; thus indicating that the first comers were men of more than ordinary means or enterprise.  Although the later provision for the accommodation of the settler of limited means was of much importance, yet it was not sufficiently so as to advance the settlement of the Territory with much rapidity.  But an act passed at a subsequent session of Congress which ordered the sections and half sections to be subdivided and offered for sale in quarter sections (160 acres), at two dollars per acre, on a credit of four years, was of vastly more importance; as it enabled thousands; and it thus encouraged and increased emigration to the western country.
     The Act of May 18, 1796, (First Statute at Large, 464), and the Act of May 10, 1800 (Second Statutes at Large, 17), provide, in substance, for the sale of public lands to the highest bidder, one-fourth of the purchase money to be paid at the time for sale, one-fourth within two years, one-fourth within three years, and the remaining one-fourth within four years from date of sale.  The Act of March 2, 1821 (Third Statutes at Large, 612) provides for the relief of purchasers of the public land, where the purchase was made prior to July 1, 1820, and they had been unable to comply with the provisions of the previous act.
     In all credit sales patented prior to the passage of this relief act, it is safe to assume that the purchase was made within the four or five years preceding the patent.  Cash entries, as a rule, were made from six months to two years prior to the date of patenting, although in the case of a few suspended entries, this rule would not apply.
     Hence, as a general rule, all patents issued for lands in Harrison county prior to 18121 (and many during the next four or five years after 1821), bear a date from four to five years later than the date of the original entry and settlement of the land.
     IN the descriptions of lands given in the following list, the words, "section," "township," and "range" have been omitted, and are to be understood as following the three numbers describing the location of the respective tracts.  For instance, "all 6.9.4" means "all of section 6, township 9, range 4," which would locate the tract as section number 6 in Short Creek township.  A section of land comprises 640 acres, the common subdivisions of which are half sections (containing 320 acres), of which there may be the north half, the west half, the south half, or the east half; quarter sections, or "quarters" (containing 160 acres), of which there may be the northeast (NE) quarter, the northwest (NW) quarter, the southwest (SW) quarter, and the southeast (SE) quarter, as well as adjoining halves of two adjoining quarters; eighth sections, or "eighties" (containing eighty acres), of which there may be the north half of the northeast quarter (N NE), west half of the northeast quarter (W NE), etc., east half of the northeast quarter (E NW), etc., east half of the southwest quarter (E SW), etc., south half of the southeast quarter (S SE), etc., as well as any two adjoining or cornering half-eighties; and sixteenth-sections, or "forties" (containing forty acres), of which there may be the northwest quarter of the northeast quarter (NW NE), etc., and so on through sixteen different descriptions, as well as any two adjoining or cornering twenty acre tracts which taken together comprise forty acres.  It will be remembered that there are thirty-six sections in a township, the numbering beginning with the section in the southeast corner, which is numbered one, and proceeding thence north to the section in the northeast corner of the township, which is numbered six, thence beginning again on the south line of the township with the section adjoining number one on the west, which is numbered seven, and proceeding north to section twelve; and so on; the section in the northwest corner of each numerical township being numbered thirty-six.  The different numerical townships and ranges of Harrison county correspond with the geographical names of the different townships as follows:

Township 8, Range 4:  Sections 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 22, 23, 24, 28, 29 and 30 form the south half of Short Creek township.
     Sections 34, 35, and 36, form part of the east one-sixth of Athens township.
     Sections 1, 2, and 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, and 33, for the east three-fourths of Wheeling township, Belmont county (adjoining Short Creek township, Harrison county, on the south), in which are located Crabapple and Unity churches.

Township 9, Range 4:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, and 27 form the north half of Short Creek township.
     Sections 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 16, 117, 18, 22, 23, 24, 28, 29, and 30 form the south three-seventh of Green township.
     Section 31 form the northeast corner section of Athens township.
     Sections 32, 33, 34, 35, and 36 form the east one-seventh of Cadiz township.

Township 10, Range 4:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 20, 21, 22, 25, 26, 27, and 28 form the north four-sevenths of Green township.
     Sections 5, 6, 11, 12, 17, 18, 23, 24, 29 (excepting the northwest eighty acres), and 30 (excepting the west 160 acres) form the south two-fifth of German township.
     Sections 33, 34, and the south half of 35 form part of the east one-sixth of Archer township.
     Section 26, the north half of 35, the west 160 acres of section 30, and the northwest 80 acres of section 29 form part of the southeast corner of Rumley township.

Township 11, Range 4:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, and 27 form the north three-fifths of German township.
     Sections 31, 32, and 33 form part of the east one-fifth of Rumley township.
     The remainder of township 11.4 lies in Jefferson and Carroll counties.

Township 9, Range 5:  Sections 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 22, 23, 24, 28, 29, and 30 form the south three-fourths of Athens township.
     Sections 34, 35, and 36 form part of the east one-seventh of Moorefield township.
     Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, and 9 form the west fourth of Wheeling township, Belmont county.
     Sections 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, and 33 form the east two-fifths of Flushing townihip, Belmont county.

Township 10, Range 5:  Sections 1, 7, 13, 19, and 25 form the north fourth of Athens township.
     Section 31 forms the northeast corner section of Moorefield township.
     Sections 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 33, 34, 35, and 36 form the west six-sevenths of Cadiz township.

Township 11, Range 5:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 20, 21, 22, the south half of sections 5, 11, 17, and 23, and the east two-thirds of sections 25, 26, 27, 28, and the south half of 29 form the township of Rumley.
     Sections 6, 12, 18, 24, the north half of sections 5, 11, 17, and 23, and east fourth of section 30 and of north half of 29 form part of the south one-third of Rumley township.

Township 12, Range 5: Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, and the east fourth of sections 25, 26, and 27 form part of the north two-thirds of Rumley township.

     The remainder of township 12.5 lies in Carroll county.

Township 10, Range 6:  Sections 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 22, 23, 24, 28, 29, 30, 34, 35, and 36 form part of the south three fourths of Moorefield township.
     Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, and 33 are in Belmont county.

Township 11, Range 6:  Sections 1, 7, 13, 19, 25, and 31 form part of the north one-fourth of Moorefield township.
     Sections 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 171, 18, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 33, 34, 35, and 36 form all of Nottingham township.

Township 12, Range 6:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 20, 21, and 22 and the south portion of sections 5, 11, 17, and 23 form the west eight-elevenths of Stock township.
     Sections 6, 12, 18, and the north portion of sections 5, 11, and 17 form part of the southwest quarter of North township.
     Sections 25, 26, 27, 28, 31, 32, 33, 34, and the south portion of sections 29 and 35 form the east two fifths of Franklin township.
     Sections 24, 30, 36, and the north portion of sections 23, 29, and 35 form part of the southwest corner of Monroe township.

Township 13, Range 6:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, and 15 form the northwest portion of North township.
     Sections 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, and 33 form the northeast portion of Monroe township.

     The remainder of township 13.6 lies in Carroll county.
Township 11, Range 7:  Sections 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 22, 23, 24, 28, 29, 30, 34, 35, and 36 form the south three-fourths of Freeport township.
     Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, and 33 are in Guernsey county.

Township 12, Range 7:  Sections 1, 7, 13, 19, 25, and 31 form the north one-fourth of Freeport township.
     Sections 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 32, 33, 34, 35, and 36 form all of Washington township.

Township 13, Range 7:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 14, 15, 16, and the south portion of sections 5, 11, and 17 form the west three-fifths of Franklin township.
     Sections 6, 12, and 18, and the north portion of sections 5, 11, and 17 form part of southwestern portion of Monroe township.

     The remainder of township 13.7 lies in Tuscarawas county.

Township 14, Range 7:  Sections 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, and 15 form the northwest portion of Monroe township.

     The remainder of township 14.7 lies in Carroll and Tuscarawas counties.

< LIST OF HARRISON COUNTY LAND PATENTS >
 

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