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Arkansas Donation Lands

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Arkansas is a public domain land state -- all of our land once belonged to the federal government. Settlers came in and acquired the land, but some abandoned that land and moved on to greener pastures. (Hello, Texas!) That abandoned land reverted to the state and it was put back into taxpayers' hands through a system of donations.

The oldest records about Arkansas' donation lands begin in 1871. These indexes cover all nine ledgers of those donation lands. The book covering 1871-1875 lists the name of the person to whom the land was donated; whether they were an adult, minor, or married woman; the county in which the land lay; the section, range, and township description; certificate number; and date of application. The rest of the volumes, covering 1876-1955, list the same information, except it omits whether the person was adult, married, etc.

Are your folks included? We've posted full-name indexes to the books. And we've included an article and an example about donation lands so you can learn more about this heretofore-unknown resource for genealogists.

  Click here to read more than you ever wanted to know about donation lands in Arkansas.

Click here to read an example about using donation lands in family history.

Why are these land records important? We all know the 1870 federal census was poorly done and underreported. Many people are listed with just initials. These land records list full names in most cases. And they tie people to specific parcels of land. From these applications, you can check county deed records and tax books. So many records only list men's names, but the early donation land application ledgers list women's names, and, in the case of the first volume, those of minor children. The volumes which cover the 1880s and 1890s fill in for the missing 1890 federal census. The volumes after 1940 help you locate a person for whom the federal census isn't yet released.

You may also buy these books in .pdf format and we'll e-mail you the file usually within one business day of receiving your order. No shipping charges are added for files delivered electronically.



Arkansas Donation Lands, 28 September 1938 - 21 March 1955

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-199-1, 70 pages, $15.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-476-6 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 1 January 1927 - 28 September 1938

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-198-3, 186 pages, $26.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-475-9 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 1 April 1902 - 30 December 1926

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-196-7, 102 pages, softbound, $19.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-474-2 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 21 December 1893 - 29 March 1902

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-193-2, 129 pages, softbound, $21.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-473-5 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 6 December 1887 - 21 December 1893

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-192-4, 117 pages, softbound, $20.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-472-8 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 3 July 1882 - 6 December 1887

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-191-6, 102 pages, softbound, $19.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-471-1 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 1 May 1880 - 30 June 1882

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-178-9, 98 pages, softbound, $19.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-470-4 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 14 December 1876 - 30 April 1880

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-175-4, 114 pages, softbound, $19.50

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-469-8 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


Arkansas Donation Lands, 1871-1875

Compiled by Desmond Walls Allen, ISBN 1-56546-171-1, 210 pages, softbound, $28.00

Click here to view the list of names in this volume

Or order this volume as a .pdf file, $7.95, ISBN 978-1-56546-468-1 [e-mail delivery, no shipping charge]


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