Don’t neglect land records if your city-dwelling ancestor was a property owner. Deeds to settle up an estate or transactions completed after your ancestor moved to a new location can be particularly helpful, but any deed can contain “new to you” information.

Deeds for my children’s early 19th century Boston ancestors contained the occupation of the grantor and grantee.



3 Responses

  1. I have been working on a family of 19th C. Bostonians and discovered the same — the occupations of the grantor and grantee which helped confirm that I had the ‘right’ person. I also came across a mortgage deed though I am a bit confused about the use of the term ‘mortgagee’; is that the same as the grantee? Perhaps I should have signed up for the land records class you are presently running (quizzical look).

    • The mortgagor is the one who signs the mortgage, so it’s the property owner. The mortgagee is the one to whom the mortgage is assigned–so in today’s terms it’s the lender.

      • Thank you. Having transcribed 4 other deeds for the same property and people over a 4-year period ending in foreclosure, I understand.

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