These are records provided by the Library of Virginia and Archives.  They are actual copies of the Card Catalog files from the Library.   They are called, "Digital Collections"

I hope you enjoy looking through these wonderful records.




Description of Collection

Recorded copies of those documents by which the Crown (between 1623 and 1774) and the Commonwealth (from 1779) transferred new land to individual ownership; since 1975 grants have mainly taken the form of escheats, usually for non-payment of taxes. To receive land, an individual paid a specified amount per acre and received a warrant which served as the authority by which surveyors could lay out the requested land.

After the survey was completed, both the warrant and the survey, along with any supplemental papers, were returned to the Land Office, where after examination of the documents, the patent or grant was issued. The original was given to the landowner, and a copy was recorded in bound registers; it is these registers that form this series.

The recorded document identifies the person(s) receiving the land, the county in which the land was located, the number of acres, the metes and bounds of the land and the date of issue. After 1779, the survey which was made on the land was also recorded in bound registers. During the colonial period land could be awarded for military service.

This series of records does not reference land located within the Northern Neck Proprietary.

General Arrangement of Finding Aid

Arrangement is alphabetical by the name of the patentee or grantee. See Detailed Arrangement below for subdivision and filing rules.

The cards contain the date of the grant, the county in which the land was located, the number of acres in the tract and a brief description of the property. The cards also note the book number and inclusive page numbers where the grant or patent was recorded. Adjacent land owners and physical features such as watercourses are often indicated.

Format of Collection

Electronic images, microfilm and original documents.

Detailed Arrangement of Finding Aid

The file is arranged by patentee or grantee. Entries of persons of the same name are subarranged first by county (with "no county indicated" at the beginning), then by the date of the patent/grant and finally by the page number in the Land Office books.

Filing rules:


1.   Mr., Mrs., Esq. and Gentleman are ignored in filing. All     
     other titles/appellatives are considered.
2.   Entries followed by military rank are filed alphabetically by 
     military rank following other designations such as Sr., Jr., 
     "of Mattapony", etc.

Custis, John
Custis, John Sr.
Custis, Capt. John
Custis, Col. John
Custis, Major Gen. John

3.   Joint patentees are filed according to the first name listed 
     following that name as an individual entry and subarranged by 
     the second name listed, then the third name listed, etc.  

More Information about the Collection

Part of: Records of the Executive Branch. Land Office (Record Group 4).

Entry 66 in Virginia Land Office Inventory. See page 54-56, A Guide to State Records in the Archives Branch, Virginia State Library and Archives (Richmond, 1985).

Related Resources

Land Office Surveys, 1779-present (Entry 41-42 in Virginia Land Office Inventory).

Cavaliers and Pioneers ... (Richmond, 1934-1979 and 1994) Vols. 1-3 abstracted by Nell Marion Nugent; v. 4-5 edited by Dennis Hudgins; v. 6-7 forthcoming. Virginia Land Office Inventory (Daphne S. Gentry) revised and enlarged by John S. Salmon (3rd ed., 1981).

Access to Materials

Phase II of the Digital Library Initiative, to be completed by March, 1997, will provide the capability of accessing the actual images of the Land Office e Records through this interface.

About the Library



The Library assesses a non-refundable service fee of $10.00 for replies to all out-of- state requests for search services. The service fee must be paid at the time an inquiry is submitted and covers staff time necessary to:

Locate the records you specified, if in our collection;

Examine the material for content;

Determine the method of reproduction;

Mark the material for reproduction;

Prepare a reply or order form.


If extended, in-depth research is required, a list of professional researchers familiar with the printed and manuscript material in our collections will be furnished.

The Library does not accept payment by credit card. Payments must be made in U.S. currency or by checks drawn on a U.S. bank.

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Photo-copies can be obtained
for a cost of $1.50 per page for the first five pages and then $1 per
page thereafter. State law requires that such orders be prepaid. Checks
should be made payable to the State Auditor.

The mailing address is:
State of West Virginia
State Auditor’s Office
Land Department
210 WestWing, Capitol Building
Charleston, WV 25305

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