Ohio County Land Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records scheduled to become available at FamilySearch.org.

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Collection Time Period

County land records have been kept from the time a county was formed to the present.

Record History

Soon after they were formed, counties began recording deeds and other land transaction records. The county recorder transcribed the documents to the registers, and the original documents remained with the owners or their families.

Why This Record Was Created

Counties in Ohio recorded land transactions to document the transfer of land ownership and thereby establish legal rights to land, track responsibilities for tax revenues, and designate persons to serve in various functions of the county, such as maintaining public roads in the early times. 

Record Reliability

The information given in county land records is quite reliable, although there may be errors made while transcribing the county’s copy from an original deed.

Record Description

Early county land records were handwritten into large bound volumes. One deed usually fills one to three pages. Deeds in the 1900s may be typed, while most recent deeds are computer-generated.  

Record Content

Genealogical facts in county land records are:

  • Dates when the transaction occurred, written up, and recorded in the county
  • Names of the grantors (sellers), the grantees (buyers), witnesses, and sometimes neighbors
  • Ages are seldom given, but a person might be mentioned as a minor
  • Exact relationships may be stated in deeds for property sold or given to heirs during a person’s lifetime
  • Usually the residences of the grantor(s) and grantee(s)
  • Usually the occupations of both the grantor(s) and grantee(s)
  • Signature or mark (usually an X) of the grantor(s)
  • Legal description of the parcel
  • Until the late 1800s, the amount of consideration 

How to Use the Record

Use land records, especially deeds from person to person, to identify names and relationship of family members, possible relatives, and in-laws. Deeds may also identify different places of residence where you can search for other records that might contain genealogical information.

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Sources of This Collection

"Ohio Land Records," database, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org/); from various county clerks throughout Ohio. FHL microfilm, Family History Library Salt Lake City, Utah.<bibdescend-->

How to Cite Your Sources

Instructions for citing this source can be found at: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections