Land Patent of the United States to Abraham Lincoln, 1 June 18551
The United States of America.
To all to whom these Presents shall come, Greeting:
To all to whom these Presents shall come, Greeting:
Whereas, In pursuance of the Act of Congress approved September 28th, 1850 entitled “An Act granting Bounty Land to certain Officers and Soldiers who have been engaged in the Military Service of the United States,” Warrant No.52076for40acres, issued in favor ofAbraham Lincoln Captain fourth Regiment Illinois Volunteers Black Hawk Warhas been returned to the GENERAL LAND OFFICE, with evidence that the same has been duly located upon theNorth West quarter of the South West quarter of Section twenty in Township Eighty four North, of Range fifteen within the District of Lands Subject to sale at Dubuque Iowa, containing forty acresaccording to the Official Plat of the Survey of the said Lands returned to the GENERAL LAND OFFICE by the SURVEYOR GENERAL:
Now Know Ye, That there is therefore granted by the UNITED STATES unto the saidAbraham Lincolnthe tract of Land above described: TO HAVE AND TO HOLD the said Tract of Land, with the appurtenances thereof, unto the saidAbraham Lincoln and to hisheirs and assigns forever.2
In Testimony Whereof, I,Franklin PiercePRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, have caused these Letters to be made Patent, and the Seal of the General Land Office to be hereunto affixed.
GIVEN under my hand, at the City of Washington, the first day of June in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fifty five and of the Independence of the United States the seventy-ninth
BY THE PRESIDENT: Franklin PierceByH E Baldwin Ast[Assistant]Sec’y[Secretary],J N GrangerRecorder of the General Land Office.
1This partially printed document was filled out by Julius N. Granger and signed by Henry E. Baldwin as himself and on behalf of Franklin Pierce.
2At the outbreak of the Black Hawk War, Lincoln volunteered for the Illinois State Militia. On April 21, 1832, Lincoln and other men from the New Salem area were mustered into a company in the Fourth Regiment of Illinois Mounted Volunteers, and the members of the company elected Lincoln as their captain. When his month of service ended, Lincoln re-enlisted twice, for twenty and thirty days respectively, serving as a private both times. He was finally discharged on July 10, 1832.
On September 28, 1850, U.S. Congress passed an act granting certain groups who had served in the United States military during the Revolutionary War, any of “the Indian wars” since 1790, and the Mexican War parcels of public land. Per this act, the amount of land that veterans (or their legal heirs) were entitled to depended upon the length of engagement and actual time served. Lincoln was entitled to forty acres of public land for the time he served as captain of the Fourth Regiment of Illinois Mounted Volunteers. This land patent was thus issued to him.
Lincoln eventually received another 120 acres of land for his service during the Black Hawk War after a federal law passed in 1855 declared that all who had served in any U.S. war since 1790 were entitled to 160 acres of land in total. This 120 acres of additional land Lincoln received was located in Crawford County, Iowa, 144 miles west of the forty acres referenced here. There is no evidence that Lincoln ever received any revenue from any of these bounty lands. After his assassination, since he did not leave a will, the forty acres of land passed in one-third equal divisions to Mary Lincoln, Robert Lincoln, and Thomas “Tad” Lincoln. The Crawford County land also passed to the remaining Lincoln family.
Muster Roll of Abraham Lincoln’s Company of Mounted Volunteers; Muster Roll of Abraham Lincoln’s Company of Mounted Volunteers; Muster Roll of Captain Elijah Iles’ Company of Mounted Volunteers; Muster Roll of Captain Jacob M. Early’s Company of Mounted Volunteers; Ellen M. Whitney, comp., The Black Hawk War, 1831-1832: Illinois Volunteers, vol. 35 of Collections of the Illinois State Historical Library (Springfield: Illinois State Historical Library, 1970), 1:176-78, 227-30, 544-46; “An Act Granting Bounty Land to Certain Officers and Soldiers Who Have Been Engaged in the Military Service of the United States,” 28 September 1850, Statutes at Large of the United States 9 (1862):520-21; Certification of Land Warrant for Abraham Lincoln’s Black Hawk War Service; Land Warrant to Abraham Lincoln; Certification of Land Warrant to Abraham Lincoln; Land Warrant to Abraham Lincoln; Land Patent of the United States to Abraham Lincoln; “An Act in Addition to Certain Acts Granting Bounty Land to Certain Officers and Soldiers Who Have Been Engaged in the Military Service of the United States,” 3 March 1855, Statutes at Large of the United States 10 (1855):701-2; Harry E. Pratt, The Personal Finances of Abraham Lincoln (Springfield, IL: Abraham Lincoln Association, 1943), 67-69.
Partially Printed Document Signed with a Representation, 1 page(s), RG 49: Records of the Bureau of Land Management, Records of the General Land Office, Land Patents, 1789-2012, National Archives at Kansas City, Central Plains Region.