For a bunch of wonderful stories, many having to do with homesteading, check out The WPA Life Histories Collection. This is a collection of stories and diaries collected during the 1930's by the WPA, a government project. The material was gathered from senior citizens of the 1930's, who either remembered homesteading in the late 1800's, or were first generation children of pioneers.
See my page: "What is a Quarter Section?" for an explanation of sections, how they are numbered, townships and other topics and links related to this topic.
The Home Page for the Homestead National Monument , and also here, of the US Parks Service in Beatrice, Nebraska.
For a good web page that will help to explain about the use of land records in genealogy, visit Land Record Reference and the Land Notes. The author of the latter site has a primary focus of Wisconsin, but has good general knowledge here. Also, at see this webmaster's links to world wide web sites about land. Don't be misled by the title about Wisconsin, many of the links mentioned are significant to all parts of the country.
Get actual copies of Homestead Documents over the Internet! Finally, the true power of the web is being used. Actual copies of the actual original land patents of our ancestors are on-line by the Bureau of Land Management. Visit the The Official Land Patents Records Site on the web with all the original government land records for the following:
Alabama Land Patents
Arkansas Land Patents
Florida Land Patents
Indiana Land Patents
Louisiana Land Patents
Michigan Land Patents
Minnesota Land Patents
Mississippi Land Patents
Missouri Land Patents
Ohio Land Patents
Wisconsin Land Patents
They have actually scanned in the original documents that can be viewed with a paint program, or an image viewer, like ACDC. They also have a program at the site for downloading for viewing the documents. I found the original land patent of my 3xg granddaddy in Ohio in just under one minute, including the sign-in. (I had previously gotten a photo-copy the "old" way a year ago - by mail.)
To determine how to actually find land on the ground, visit "Where
Two Oak Trees Grow".
Copyright, Norris Taylor, 1998