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Free Grants of Land in Upper Canada (Canada West, Ontario)

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Olive Tree Genealogy Picks this genealogy database Return of Emigrants Landed at the Port of Kingston Ontario, Canada 1861-1882 gives the final destination of the individuals, their date of arrival at Kingston and more
Olive Tree Genealogy Picks this genealogy databaseShips passenger lists for Peter Robinson Settlers sailing 1825 Ireland to Ontario Canada
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Ontario Land Records

Land records are very useful. Originally all land in Ontario belonged to the Crown. Although there were small areas of settlement in 1763 after the British took over, major settlement of Upper Canada began in 1783 and utilized Crown Grants. Many early settlers, both military and civilian, submitted land petitions to the Governor in order to obtain Crown land.

Genealogy in Ontario: Searching the records by Brenda Dougall Merriman

Free Grants of Crown Land

Up to 1826 free land grants were available to all settlers, to government favourites, and to UEL children. In 1826 these free grants were abolished except Loyalist grants and soldiers, and anyone wanting Crown land had to buy it.

Type of Free Grant (TYPE FG)

The qualifying regulations and administration fees charged to the settlers changed over time.
Free Grant Codes & Explanation
  • OR Old Regulations -no administrative fees were demanded.
  • NR New Regulations -no administrative fees were demanded.
  • FF Full Fees - all administrative costs paid by locatee.
  • UE United Empire Loyalist -a settler resident in Upper Canada before 28 July 1789.
  • DUE Daughter of a United Empire Loyalist -check for a related UE listing giving the parent(s).
  • SUE Son of a United Empire Loyalist -check for a related UE listing giving the parent(s).
  • LB Land Board -certificates issued in the original four Districts of Upper Canada 1789-1794.
  • COMM Heir & Devisee Commissions- a federal (1797-1804) and provincial (1805-1911) board appointed to hear disputed claims for land titles.
  • M Military/ Militia Service -especially for War of 1812-1814 service. The microfilmed fiat and warrant will give the petitioner's rank and regiment.
  • MC Military Claimant -a disbanded or pensioned soldier of the British Army.
  • ME Military Emigrant - Perth and Richmond Settlement locatees of Lanark County, originally administered by Quarter Master General's Dept. of British Army during 1815-1822.
  • SE Scotch Emigrants -grants offered in 1815 to sons of Military Emigrants (ME).
  • PR Peter Robinson Immigrant -settlers in Peterborough region 1823-1826.
  • AA Gratuitous -grant to a settler who was (a) judged destitute by a Government Board and/or (b) had all their administrative fees waived.
  • 1819 Regulations of 5 January 1819: No fees were to be collected until the grantees had performed their settlement duties, and only when the patent was issued.
  • 1820 Regulations of 1 January 1820
  • 1825 Regulations of 21 November 1825
  • V Veteran -offered after 1901 for service during Fenian Raids (1860s) or South African Campaign (1899-1902).


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