July’s Program: Getting The Dirt on Our Ancestors Using Land Records with Carol Stetser


Carol Stetser

Carol Stetser (shown above) will be talking about land records, what a vital resource when doing United States research, but how many genealogists overlook them because they are often regarded as being complicated to use and lacking in any information other than dry descriptions of acreages. While land records do describe plots of land, they can also contain all sorts of other information including an ancestor’s specific location at a specific date, occupation, relationships, inheritance information and often at least the given name of his wife. In addition, in historic times, most men owned at least some land, and because it is important to know who owns what property, land records start earlier than most other records and fewer of them have been lost over time.

This presentation is an introduction to land records which includes information on the two main types of surveys made in the U.S. Metes and Bounds surveys are used in the eastern parts of the country, and the Public Land Survey System is used in the Midwestern and Western parts of the country. This will include a discussion of the BLM GLO Records website which is an important database when discussing homestead land records.

The last section of the presentation will cover private land transactions including where to find the records, what they contain and tips on website and county courthouse research.

Carol is an avid genealogist whose love for genealogy is a natural outgrowth of her background in England and history. She has served in various capacities for several northern Colorado genealogical societies. In addition to researching her own family, Carol volunteers as the researcher for Larimer County Genealogical Society and volunteers online to help out-of-area researchers find records for their families. She also gives presentations on various aspects of genealogical research and writes “how-to” articles for the “Fifty Plus Marketplace” newsletter in Larimer County. Carol is recently participated in a cemetery program for her local DAR chapter which entailed photographing all 20,000+ graves at Grandview Cemetery in Fort Collins, as well as researching stories of many of those who are buried there. A longtime member of the Swedish Genealogical Society of Colorado, Carol is actively researching her Swedish ancestry, focusing recently on her links to nobility, including one who was beheaded for murder!

Visitors are welcome to all meetings!
Questions? Contact: Stacey – Phone 970-493-4241 or Email
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