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land  Records

About Land Records

Mississippi Land Patents Database:  Hinds County
You can view current county maps at the Mississippi Department of Transportation web site:
These maps show the Township, Range and Section numbers of each parcel of land in the county.
The BLM is in the process of scanning and putting on- line all of these records for you to see and print out
for your own use. http://www.glorecords.blm.gov

Mississippi BLM Office:
Eastern States Office
Bureau of Land Management
7450 Boston Blvd.
Springfield, VA 22153
Tel: (703) 440-1600
FAX: (703) 440-1599

     Land Surveying Measurement  Conversions

1 Acre = 43,560 square feet
1 Acre = 160 square rods
1 Acre = 1.1834 square arpents
1 Acre = 10 square chains
1 Acre  = 160 square rods
1 Acre = 160 perches
1 Acre = 160 poles
1 Acre = .4047 hectare
1 Acre = 4047 square meters
1 Acre is about 208.7 square feet
1 Acre Square = 5645.376 square varas
Arpen  Exact conversion varies by locality
1 Arpent (LA, MS, AL, FL) = .84625 of an acre
1 Arpent Square (LA, MS, AL, FL) = 191.994 feet or 2.909 chains on each side
1 Arpent (AR and MO = .8507 of an acre
1 Arpent Square (AR and MO) = 192.5 feet or 2.91667 chains on each side
Caballeria   (Texas-Spainish) = 108 acres

1 Chain = 66 feet
1 Chain = 4 rods
1 Chain = 4 perches
1 Chain = 4 poles
1 Chain = 100 links
1 Chain = 20.1168 meters

1 Foot = 12 inches
1 Foot = .36 varas
1 Foot = 0.3048006

1 Furlong = 660 feet
1 Furlong = 40 rods

1 Hectre = 10,000 square meters
1 Hectre = 2.471 acres
Knot 1 Knot = 6080.2 feet
Labor (Texas-Spanish)
1 Labor = 1,000,000 square varas
1 League= 4428.4 acres
League (Texas-Spanish)
1 League = 4428.4 acres
1 League = 25,000,000 square varas

1 Link = 7.92 inches
1 Link = 66 feet
1 Link = 0.2017 meter

1 Mile = 5, 280 feet
1 Mile = 8 furlongs
1 Mile = 80 chains
1 Mile = 1.6 kilometers
1 Mile =320 perches
1 Mile = 320 poles
1 Mile = 320 rods
1 Mile = 8000 links
1 Mile = 1,609.26 meters
1 Mile Square = 1 section of land
1 Mile Square = 27, 878,400 square feet
1 Mile Square = 640 acres
1 Mile Square = 259 hectares
1 Mile Square = 2.59 square hectares

1 Perch = 25 links
1 Perch = 1 pole
1 Perch = 1 rod
1 Perch = 16.5 feet

1 Pole = 25 links
1 Pole = 1 perch
1 Pole= 1 rod
1 Pole= 16.5 feet
1 Rod = 25 links
1 Rod = 1 perch
1 Rod = 1 pole
1 Rod = 16.5 feet

1 section =1 mile long, by 1 mile wide
1 section = 640 acres
Sitio   (Texas-Spainish) = 1 league
Vara Vara conversions vary by location
1 Vara (Texas-Spainish) = 331/3 inches
1 Vara (Southern Colorado) 32.993 inches
1 Vara (Florida) 33.372 inches

1 Yard = 36 inches
1 Yard = 3 feet
1 Yard Square = 9  square feet

Federal land sales in Mississippi (and other eastern states)are available on-line at http://www.glorecords.blm.gov
At the site you can look at and print a copy of the land record, the legal description (township, etc).  If yours were Homestead claims (rather than sales) copies of the claim for a homestead (which includes number of children, brief description of the home and outbuildings, and affidavits from others as to how long they had been living on the land) can be ordered from the National Archives for $17.95.     Andrea Harris
Source: http://politicalgraveyard.com/geo/MS/HI.html

About Mississippi Land Records
Mississippi is a federal-land state. Land transactions were generally acquired from the federal government or other individuals. Prior to U.S. possession, lands were acquired from the French and the Spanish governments. For federal government purchases, consult the Bureau of Land Management, Eastern States Office's patent indexes, available on CD-ROM through various genealogical vendors and through the Government Printing
Office in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

These patent indexes are also found among the database searches available at the Ancestry.com web site (www.ancestry.com). Land-entry case files for these patents are available at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. Lands received from Spanish and British governments can be researched through "private land claims" (the settling of property ownership by the government of the United States for lands previously acquired under a different sovereign). The federal boards of commissioners' case files for private land claims are housed at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. Also, private land claim records are on microfilm (RG 28 SG 1) at the Mississippi Department of Archives, and History and can be accessed by consulting the department's guide, "Index to Private Claims and Field Notes in Mississippi."

Land transactions between individuals were recorded at the county courthouse and filed by the chancery clerk. Many pre-twentieth-century deeds have been microfilmed and are available at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History and the FHL. For further reference, see:

Hone, E. Wade. Land and Property Research in the United States. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, Inc., 1997.

 Conversation and Notes Regarding Land Records

Not all Land Patents show the cost of the land that the purchaser was buying.  It may be there in some instances but was not always shown by theindividual recording the information.

According to the BLM site, In the early 1800's people could buy public land under the Cash-Act for $1.25 an acre and for a time, they could purchase up to a maximum of 640 acres.

The Homestead Act of 1862 nullified the terms of the Cash Act and this act allowed people to settle up to 160 acres of public land if they lived on it for a period of five years and grew crops or made improvements.  There was no cost associated with the acquisition of the land other than a filing fee.

Neither of these acts are currently in effect.

Unlike the Homestead Act which required that the purchaser settle on the land for a period of five years, the Cash-Act had no such restrictions.  All that was required was sufficient cash to purchased the land the
individual was interested in buying.  Thus, there were many land speculators that purchased land with the sole intent of reselling it later  at a profit.  As a result, many of the original land patents were issued to individuals that never lived on the land they purchased.  The ultimate settler on some sections of land purchased their land from a speculator and the sale would be recorded as a deed transfer in the County's Chancery Court.  This is unfortunate for genealogists, because it robs them of a wonderful source of information at the Federal level.

by Everette Carr

If they received a Patent from the Land Office, then they bought their land from the U.S. Government and paid exactly $1.25 per acre. The cash price was set by Congress and stayed constant from the 1810s to the 1850s, I believe. The land is described by Section > Township and Range. As I recall the MSJEFFER website has an explanation of these somewhere.

I don't know of any limit on purchases except cash money. A full section (1 mile square, 640 acres) @ 1.25 would cost $800, a hefty sum for a small farmer.   With private sales the price varied. From 1828 to 1856 my ancestor paid between 63c and $2.57 per acre for different tracts in Jefferson. He paid $7.39 for one tract but I think that was a working plantation with a house and farm buildings.
by Bruce


Many who retained ownership of the land never lived on it , they send a overseer or forman to live on it and operate it or they leased it.  Many were foriegners who lived in Scotland or other European countries.
I found this true when I was reseaching the TX Land Pantents and Deeds of the early Ranching era.
by  Evie Crocker

Land sold about 1830 or so was sold under the bit law--one bit equaled 12 1/2 cents. (this is where the expression of two-bits used to mean one quarter came from) The Union Church people bought their land patents just like everyone else--except that vets of the Rev war were often given land grants--these grants were usually in TN  Many of the settlers in early MS just came in and later registered their land claim after MS became a state.  For a lot of the land in the Natchez Territory there are no orginal records of sale.   The govt office in Washington MS burned and early records were often hard to find.


Page Created August 31, 2004
Copyright © 2004  Jane Combs  All Rights Reserved