Peoria County, Illinois  Genealogy Trails



Summary of the Laws regarding Land Grants in Illinois


Abstracted by: Candi Horton  2006 

Claims in Illinois- 15th Congress No. 277 1st Session
Communicated to the House of Representatives February 24, 1818


The resolutions of Congress of 1788, and act of 1791, claims to land at Vincennes, and in the Illinois country, founded on ancients grants made by the French or British Governments, were recognized and donations were made to heads of families in 1783, of four hundred acres, to those who had improved lands, not more than four hundred acres, and to those who did militia duty in August, 1790, one hundred acres. The Governor of the Northwestern Territory was empowered to allot and confirm to the inhabitants the lands they might be entitled to under the provisions of said resolutions and act of Congress. 
The governor of the Northwestern Territory proceeded to perform that duty, and continued from time to time, to make grants and confirmations until the power was transferred to the governor of the Indiana Territory, who also made grants and confirmations, until the power was transferred to Boards of Commissioners established about the year 1804. 
(No reports ever being required to be made of their proceedings) 
On the 20th of February, 1812, Congress organized a Board of Commissioners to revise the grants and confirmations of the governors. . By, reference to the resolutions of 1788, and the law of 1791, it appears that the right to "donations to heads of families," accrued twenty-nine years before the passage of the law of 1812; the same remark replies to the improvement rights, and the claims derived from militia services accrued twenty-two years before the sitting of the Board of Commissioners under the act of 1812.


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