Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Land Plat Records Are Often Overlooked in Family History Research

On January 14, I wrote about chattel deeds. Another often overlooked record group in Itawamba County research is the plat record. The plat records in Itawamba County go back to the county’s founding days. The county surveyor would record land surveys for local citizens who required such surveys. These survey records were recorded in the probate clerk's office (present-day chancery court clerk). The land plat record includes the name of the landowner, a drawing of the land survey, and a description of the survey. Many early residents are documented in these old records as each record includes the name of the surveyor or his assistant, a listing of the chain carriers, the name of the land owner and the probate clerk. Below is an abstract of a sample entry from Plat Book A:

James Shorter Plat

The State of Mississippi
Itawamba County

I, Alexander Rogers, county surveyor for said county do certify that I have surveyed for James Shorter in said county the North West Quarter of Section Eighteen in Township Ten of Range ( East of the Bases Meridian in the Chickasaw Survey. Beginning corner – Beginning at the senter (sic) of the Section running north one hundred and sixty two poles….

Surveyed February the 25th, 1839
Alexander Rogers
County Surveyor

Chain Carriers: William Townley, James Shorter, Jesse Bradley

The State of Mississippi
Itawamba County

I Jepthah Robins, clerk of the probate court of said county do hereby certify that the within plat was deposited in my office for record on the 20th day of May 1839 and the same has been duly reorded in Plat Book A, Page 2.

Given under my hand and the seal of said court at office this 3rd day of February 1841.

J. Robins, Clk.

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