About this collection
Under the Dominion Lands Act, once Crown land had been surveyed and officially declared available for settlement, individuals could apply to homestead a quarter section (160 acres) of their choice. Then, after paying a $10 filing fee and 'proving up' their homestead claim (occupying the land for at least three years and performing certain improvements, including building a house and barn, fencing, breaking and cropping a portion of the land), the homesteader could apply for patent (title) to the land.
Dominion Lands Branch in Ottawa managed the homesteading process, although business was conducted at local land agency offices throughout the Province. When each quarter section was homesteaded for the first time it was given a file number and all documents relating to that quarter were placed on file until the land patent was granted.
This collection consists of individual homestead application files for land throughout Alberta. Most files will include an application for entry for a homestead. Files may also include an application for homestead patent, if the applicant met the requirements to receive a title to the land. Additional documentation may be found in some homesteader files to support their application claims. These application files provide some basic biographical information on the homesteader, such as:
- Place of birth
- Date of application for entry or patent
- Place of residence at application
- Homestead location (settlement, coordinates, section, township, range, meridian)
- Marital status
Please note that the application dates in this index were mostly transcribed from the homesteader's application for entry, though they were sometimes transcribed from the application for patent.
Some of the information in this description comes from the Internet Archives.