1876 Larned, Kansas Homestead Certificate/Grant for Samuel S Hart
This is a homestead certificate for the year 1876 in the new state of Kansas that followed the May 20, 1862 Act of Congress called 'To secure Homesteads to actual Settlers on the Public Domain' (all of Kansas was owned by the government at this time). This certificate is for 160 acres in the newtown of Larned, Kansas. Larned was in Pawnee County that was once Native American land.
In a quote directly from the Department of the Interior website on these Homestead Certificates that are also called Land Grants, this is the law of the land as of February 5, 1875:
"When all requirements of the laws and of the General Land Office had been fulfilled, all papers executed or filed with the Register in the process of such fulfillment (including duplicate record copies of receipts and other documents issued by the register and receiver to the entryman) were forwarded to the General Land Office in Washington. This document was a formal certification made by the Register of the district land office to the Commissioner of the General Land Office that an entryman had fulfilled all legal requirements for obtaining a patent to a described piece of land, and that he was entitled to such patent. The papers were then examined in the General Land Office and, if all was found to be proper, a patent was prepared and sent, usually to the Register of the district office where the entry had been made, for delivery to the entryman. The General Land Office was often so far behind in its work that there was an interval of six months to three years between the receipt of the land-entry papers and the issuance of the patent."
It often took several years for a homestead certificate to be approved and the certificate sent back to the petitioner.
This particular certificate was attested to on July 25, 1876 and was made out to Samuel S Hart. He is listed in J. A. Walker's Early History of Edward County as part of the first six man jury in the county in 1873 that came down with the verdict "Guilty, with a recommendation to the mercy of the court, (signed) S. S. Hart, foreman."
This certificate has Grant's signature on it that was signed by D. D. Cone, his chief secretary, because after 1830 the amount of certificates that had to be signed every day was enormous and could not be handled by the current President.
The red seal is still intact and in excellent shape, which is quite rare, and the certificate itself is in great shape with only a couple of rips on the edges where it has been folded.
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