The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

until 1888. The last special act authorizing the issuance of a
bounty warrant was passed on April 2, 1887. The commissioner of
the General Land Office issued that warrant for 68o acres, Special
Act Warrant Number 14/82, on February 28, 1888, to the heirs
of Alexander Farmer. It was the last original bounty warrant
Texas bounty warrants, with one exception, were assignable,
and a lively traffic in the sale and exchange of the warrants took
place. Usually the transfer was recorded on the back of the war-
rant itself, except in cases where numerous transfers had been
made, and in that case separate sheets were required. The proce-
dure of "locating" or having a survey made on the warrant re-
quired the holder to select his land from any of the vacant and
unappropriated public domain of the state before presenting his
warrant to a licensed surveyor who made the survey. The surveyor
recorded the field notes of the survey, made a plat of the county
in which the land was surveyed showing the survey in its proper
position, and then returned the warrant, field notes, and transfers
with the plat to the land office. If the land office found no conflict
with prior surveys a patent (deed) was issued to the owner of the
warrant at the time of the survey. Regardless of how many times
a warrant was sold, the land office entries were always made in the
name of the original grantee. The patent drawn up in the land
office included the warrant number and the full legal description
(the field notes), of the tract upon which title was being surren-
dered by the state. The patent was then presented to the president
of Texas, or after 1846 to the governor, for his signature, before
being returned to the land office where a copy was recorded in the
"Patent Record Books." There are seventeen such books contain-
ing 8,834 patents which were issued on bounty warrants.
A total of 7,469 bounty warrants were actually issued from
1835 to 1888, granting 5,354,250 acres of public land to veterans.
In these figures the true extent of Texas bounty land grants is
outlined for the first time."4
"4Special Act Certificates 14/1 to 14/84. Issued by the Commissioner of the
General Land Office, 5-21-73 to 7-22-91 (MSS., General Land Office, Austin).
45These figures, not heretofore compiled, were obtained by creating a descriptive
card for every bounty warrant of which a record could be found. Then each warrant
was traced through the land office files for additional information. The figures here
given were obtained by compilation from the cards.


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed May 6, 2015.