The Homestead Act of 1862

The Homestead Act of 1862

Summary Details

Length: 60 minutes

Summary: The Homestead Act of 1862 not only helped populate a major portion of the current United States during the 19th and 20th centuries, but it left behind a vibrant record set for genealogy research.

Description:  In this session you’ll learn how The Homestead Act of 1862 lured citizens of the United States to procure federal lands West of the Mississippi River. The application and qualification process, as burdensome as it was for our ancestors, produced a bumper crop of documents for use by genealogists and family historians.

Audience Level: Beginner

Requirements: Projection for laptop/netbook computer on large screen; internet connection – wired or wireless (preferred in order to show live websites and resources).

Content: 4 page handout


  • The Homestead Act of 1862
  • The Homesteading Process
  • Homestead Act Records
  • Land Records
  • Online Homestead Act Records
  • Links

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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