National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has custody of the land entry case files for the 30 Federal public land states. There are case files for all states in the United States except the original 13 states. This publication is intended to provide an overview of the land entry files held at the National Archives Building and an introduction to research in them.
An alphabetical listing of grantees of Spanish land concessions or Mexican land grants prepared under the Work Progress Administration program in the 1930s.
An alphabetical listing of California private land grants that was obtained from the 1928 General Land Office Map of California.
An alphabetical listing of the 580 expediente that were completed. Cover page printed; index handwritten. Provides claimant name, rancho name (locality), date and number.
Detailed explanation regarding documents found in the California Private Land Claims folders; Index of Case Exppedientes
Detailed report regarding California Private Land Grant Records in the National Archive prepared by J. N. Bowman, January 24, 1956.
Provides historical background, types of private land grant papers in the National Archives and the location of other private land grant papers both nationally and within the State of California.
Describes types of private land grant papers located within the National Archives and their condition.
Extensive lists of Expedientes, Unclassified Expedientes and Board Expedientes
Cartographic Records Pertaining to California Private Land Claims, U.S. National Archives, NA-1, Grim 2-19-82.
A listing of Records of California Private Land Claims that includes:
Complete expedientes (case file). Case file contains variety of textual documents, all in Spanish. Most include a diseños or rough sketch map of the particular grant. It should be the original drawing.
Incomplete expedientes (includes copy of diseños).
Case expedientes (AKA Board expedientes; includes copy of diseños).
Board of Land Commissioners, three volumes of diseños (copies from originals).
Maps separated from General Land Office docket files.
Land Offices plats of survey, 25 volumes of survey plats.
Reference works for researching California Private Land Claims.
A chronological list of the private land grants made by Juan B. Alvarado between 1839 and 1842 prepared in connection with the Work Progress Administration program administered during the 1930s.
Alphabetical Index of Complete Expediente, List D, with corresponding Docket Number (Expediente Number).
Expedientes, California Board of Land Commissioners, Record Group 49: Records of the General Land Office
A 1939 alphabetical listing of Expedientes with claimant and Expediente numbers, located in the National Archives, Record Group 49: Records of the General Land Office, California private land claims.
Field Notes of California Private Claims – Partly from Chart Index E’s, California field-note drawer) showing such field notes as are in volumes, whether governing or not.
Index – California Private Land Claims - Annotated typescript list prepared in Survey Division of General Land Office (Bureau of Land Management). Covers plats, survey field notes and similar records in Plat Room and other sections of the GLO prior to 1952. Arranged alphabetically by name of claimant. Photostat made in National Archives from original typescript copy of the BLM, November 1952.
Maps Separated from Docket Files, List C – Oversized maps and plats, California private land claims, Record Group 49, Records of the General Land Office (Received from NNR Nov-Dec, 1969, filed by docket number).
Alphabetical Index of incomplete Expediente, List D, with corresponding Docket Number (Expediente Number), designating those Expediente that have drawing included.
Handwritten and typed index cards providing location in National Archives and details regarding maps of Mexican and Californian:
Early Spanish map embracing frontiers of his majesty's (Spanish) territories in North America
1804 General map of the Kingdom of New Spain
Second edition (1846) of 1832 map of the United States of Mexico Republic
1849 California, Chart of the coast from San Blas to San Francisco, James Imray
1916 Map of Mexico issued by Southern Department of Army Continental Command for War College
U.S. National Archives Undated Index of California Private Land Grants, Unclassified (Incomplete) Expedientes, List E.
A list in chronological in order by the General Land Office number for each private land grant made in California that had been surveyed by the time this document was created. It was prepared as part of the Work Progress Administration program in the 1930s.
A list prepared by a Work Progress Administration employee listing the land grants by General Land Office number and the corresponding rancho along with a translation of the rancho name.
Outline History of California Board of Land Commissioners, 1851-1856, Philip P. Brower, February 1943
A detailed outline pertaining to the history of the California Board of Land Commissioners from 1851-1850.
A list of land grants organized by the date of the original Spanish land concession or Mexican land grant prepared under the Work Progress Administration program in the 1930s.
A report (93 pages) on the historical background of land tenure in California.
Provides the series of the land records of California located in Federal agencies and California and detailed background information for each category:
- Land records of the Spanish and Mexican Archives of California;
- Documents deposited in support of claims filed with the Board of Land Commissioners, 1852-1856;
- Records of Proceedings of that Board, 1851-1856;
- Attorney General's transcripts of Land Commission cases, 1852-1856; and
- Records of cases appealed to the Supreme Court from the United States District Courts in California
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