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REVOLUTIONARY BOUNTY LAND

During the Revolutionary War, the General Assembly of North Carolina, offered bounty land to encourage young men to volunteer to serve in the Continental Line. There was plentiful vacant land in the West which was still a part of North Carolina. A Private was offered 7.6 acres for each month that they served.

Commissioned ranks received more and this increased with rank. The expectation was for at least 2 years service and the "duration of the war" was ideal.

None of the bounty land fell within modern day North Carolina. It was mainly in the present State of Tennessee. A large tract northeast of Nashville was set aside in 1783 for the purpose of these land warrants.

Land 1783 - 1797
1st series (Nos 1-5312) granted by the Governor of North Carolina for land in TN
These original bounty land warrants are in the Sec. of State's Land Grant Office in Raleigh

Land 1799-1841
2nd series (Nos 1-1241) . The difference was that TN located the land and granted the patents.
These original bounty land warrants are in TN.
For help in understanding the meaning of warrant and patent, visit our Land page.

History of TN Lands

North Carolina had agreed to cede the western portion of the state to the United States (around 1790) [Territory South of the River Ohio]. North Carolina retained the right to continue paying her veterans with land grants in Tennessee. Tennessee gained statehood in 1796.
Published Resource: Tennessee Genealogical Records: Records of Early Settlers from State and County Archives by Edythe Rucker Whitley (1985) Genealogical Publishing Co.
Abtracted from loose papers in TN State Archives.
What can I learn from the Land Warrant?
Did serving in the local Militia count for land?
No. ALL Revolutionary War Bounty Land was for Continental Line only.

If I locate a Revolutionary War Bounty Land warrant, can I be assured that the ancestor fought in the Continental Line? Well, almost. Exceptions were that the surveyors who laid off the Tennessee land and the guards who protected them while they were doing it, did receive bounty land. But if you look closely at their warrants/patents, it will clearly indicate the type of service they rendered.

My ancestor is believed to have received Bounty Land, but he's not listed in the Sec of State's Land Grant Books. Why?
He may have received the Bounty Land for his service, but may not have followed through with paying for the patent. He may have elected to sell the land for cash.

I think that my ancestor's land in Bertie County may have been a Revolutionary War Bounty Land. Is this possible?
No. All the bounty land was outside present day North Carolina. The land was in Tennessee which at that early time was the western land of North Carolina.

Where should I start? N.C. Archives has a record book called Military Land Warrant Book by the Secretary of State's office which registers 6,554 Revolutionary War Bounty Land Warrants issued by the state. It is divided into the 1st series and the 2nd series.

Is this published in a book I might find in my local library? The DAR in their Rosters of Soldiers from North Carolina in the American Revolution (pages 233-312) lists warrants, but according to Mrs. Helen Leary, the list was printed from an incomplete and faulty register and are missing 1,579 warrants.

For complete information consult: Helen Leary's North Carolina Research


Bertie County Page last updated: Tuesday, 22-Sep-2009 10:35:55 MDT


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