It's important to know the general steps in acquiring "first" title to property in the United States. It is also important not to interchange terms that do not mean the same thing. In the next issue of Casefile Clues, one of the documents that we look at is a survey from Maryland in 1794. We also look at a deed that sold part of that property.
The document that we use in the analysis is the survey, which delineates where the property lines are located. It's not the document that transfers title--that's the patent. And it's not the document that authorizes the surveyor to survey--in this case the warrant does that.
We'll analyze the survey and the subsequent deed for part of the property and see how they can lead to additional discoveries and how a few key items were nearly interpreted incorrectly.