Using General Land Indexes

Last week I was researching a house in Windsor, Connecticut that will be used as an example in an upcoming talk for the Windsor Historical Society. I went to the Windsor Town Hall with Bev Garvan, a Director and the society’s unofficial house historian, to trace the deeds to the house.

While there I encountered a General Land Index for the first time. I thought I would share this with you in case you ever run into an index like this.

Historic Home in Windsor, CT

The General Land Index covers the years up to 1799 for land transactions in Windsor. What makes it a General Land Index is that both the grantor and grantee indexes are in the same volume.

Typically when at a town hall or registry of deeds you will find a series of grantor indexes and another series for the grantees. In this particular volume you will find the grantor indexes on the left hand side of the page and the grantee indexes on the right. Otherwise it appears as a normal index with the grantors and grantees listed alphabetically within the index.

If you happen to be researching deeds in Windsor, Connecticut you will soon discover that only one Index is a General Land Index. All the rest follow the standard grantor and grantee series. Please note that the Windsor Town Hall is digitizing the indexes so some of them are off-site. Be sure to call ahead to see if the indexes for the years you need are available before diving in.

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