Did your ancestors immigrate to North America between 1763-1865? This online database contains more than 82,000 individuals who arrived in present-day Ontario, Canada between 1783 and 1865. Keep in mind that may pioneers from America landed and settled first in this particular area of Canada before moving on to the United States.
To obtain a grant of free land, each pioneer settler was required to submit a written petition. He had to supply the necessary certificates from a local judge confirming his age, that he was of good character, and if available a discharge certificate from the military. Usually, the documents were returned, so they are not included with these land petitions.
The process of granting the land followed four essential steps:
• Assigning of specific lots to each settler;
• The land assigned was surveyed to establish exact boundaries
• Settlers were required to clear and cultivate a small section of the land
and build a dwelling house
• Finally, when all of these requirements were satisfied, the deed was issued
Click on the link below to search for your ancestor:
Type your ancestor’s name into the search fields:
This link is an index to the petitions, with full details on where the actual petitions can be found for each individual listed. Remember to note the microfilm, volume, and page numbers, so you may easily find your ancestor’s land records using the next link:
To see the actual images of your ancestor’s land petition:
The digitized images are presented in PDF, but there is also a link on the page to the JPG file if you would like to print the record, or save it to your computer’s hard drive.
Once you have the microfilm number, in my case it is C-2739 (see above), then click on the Land Record link below, and it will take you to the page with the digitized images.
Your record may be on the first page, or you can use the ‘Next’ button at the bottom of the page to move forward to the page where you’ll find the link to your ancestor’s record:
Click on the link to your record, and look for the listing that matched the results in your first search:
(this shows you the Petition number, the Volume number, the Reference numbers, etc.)
Use the arrow to move to the pages that you are looking for. In this case, for my record it is in Vol. 421, RG 1, L 3, and document 59f-59g: (you may have to check the tops of the pages for the page number you are looking for. Make sure that you are in the correct section according to your initial search results)
….and here is the record for my ancestor, Tobias Stafford, on concession 11, lot 10 of Drummond Township:
If you are researching your family history, a land record is a valuable addition to your genealogical records.
Finding the land records for your family can be fun to do with the kids or grand kids, and can teach them a bit about their own family history.
Lanark County also has an interactive map showing historic land ownership.
Click on the link to the site below, click on the township and concession where your ancestor lived, and you will see the listing for the land grant:
The original records are available on microfilm at the Library and Archives Canada.
If you are not able to travel to Ottawa, you may email or call the LAC to find out if these microfilms may be loaned to your local library (NAC Series RG 1, L 3)
For more help in finding your Lanark County ancestors’ land records, contact the Archives Lanark:
(images of land records and search pages are from the Library and Archives, Canada, 395 Wellington St, Ottawa, ON K1A 0N4)
Good luck with your search!