Recording Deeds Was Not Always Prompt

Searching deeds requires the researcher to look for a time after the actual document was drawn up and signed. Purchasers usually recorded deeds relatively promptly, but not always. If the courthouse was a distance or difficult to get to, it may have been years before the document was recorded. And sometimes people simply forgot to record a deed and did not realize it until the property was sold or the owner died. Don’t assume that your ancestor who lived in an area from 1830-1840 would have no deeds of sale recorded outside that time frame. recordingdates


One thought on “Recording Deeds Was Not Always Prompt

  1. Jade

    The date of an agreement to sell/buy does not necessarily reflect consummation of the agreement via full payment as agreed. The deed may be recorded only when the buyer presents the Register of Deeds with a receipt acknowledging payment. And then often there was the recordation fee to be paid, and/or excise taxes.

    There are lots of reasons for a deed to be brought for belated recording by an estate administrator, or by a person who had been designated to do so by a Power of Attorney.

    The diligent researcher should also deeply investigate court records that can result in partition and/or sale indexed by name of appointed commissioners or a Sheriff with names in the grantor index that are unrelated to the name of the prior owner, and sometimes such deeds ordered by a Court in Chancery that might not be recorded as deeds or mortgages at all.

    Land records can have a lot of twists and turns.


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