The Public Domain Lands in Illinois, 1813-1870.

Poster presented at the:
ESRI users conference, Redlands California, May 1994;

1995 Midwest/Great Lakes ARC/INFO User Conference, Champaign, Illinois, September 27-19, 1995.

The Project

The Illinois State Museum has made several efforts in integrating 19th-century documents and ARC/INFO. One of these has focused on Illinois land records produced at federal land offices and computerized by the Illinois State Archives. By relating the legal location recorded in the land office documents with information digitized from modern topographic maps it is possible to produce various maps reflecting, for example, earliest or last date of entry per section, or average date per section.

Since the pattern of land entries reflects the spatial pattern of frontier development and settlement, this application of the data allows a view of the history of Illinois never before possible. However, the specific patterns in a particular area (and at a particular time) are the results of an interplay of social, ecological, economic, and legal dimensions. Although the subject is a bit large for this poster, there are several basic themes visible here.

We are continuing to improve on this data set, and have completed some modeling efforts based on selective overlays of the land record data on other spatial variables.

The Public Domain land records for Illinois, are online at the the Illinois State Archives.

SCHROEDER, Erich K., GIS Lab, Illinois State Museum-RCC, 1011 East Ash St., Springfield, IL 62703;

eks, October 19, 1994

© Illinois State Museum -- Last updat ed 14-Nov-00 by Erich Schroeder