Instructions to Deane and Kavanagh from the Land Office


Land Office at Bangor, July 11th, 1831

To John G. Deane & Edward Kavanagh, Esquires:

Gentlemen, For the purpose of fulfilling the requirements of the "Resolve in relation to the persons settled on the public land without title" passed March 31, 1831.  You are requested and instructed to proceed by the way of Moosehead lake to Penobscot river and down that river to Chesuncook lake, and thence up to Umbazookskus to the portage between the Umbasookskus and Alligash lakes, and down the Alligash stream to the St.John river, and down the same to such settlements as you may find within the State of Maine on the St.John and Aroostook rivers and the waters and branches of the same.  [For a map of the route they took, see the main page]

You will obtain as far as you may information respecting the same.  You will ascertain at what time and under what circumstances those settlements were commenced, and inquire by what authority the several individuals claim to hold the lands they occupy.  If any persons claim under the color of title, you will inquire the origin and extent of such claims and whether the same is by grant, deed, lease, or other conveyance and from what authority the same is pretended to have been derived, at what time the conveyance was made, and at what time possession was obtained under the same.  You will observe what improvements the several occupants have made on the land they claim and ascertain whether such improvements were made by the present occupants, or others to whom they have succeeded, by purchase, inheritance, or otherwise.  You will, as far as practicable, ascertain the value of the land in the several settlements, and state what you consider to be the average value in cash.  You will also ascertain whether the settlements are on the undivided land owned by Massachusetts and Maine or on the land of either State, or of individuals, who claim under grants or purchases from either of said States.

You will also ascertain what depredations and trespasses have been committed on the public lands of the State of Massachusetts and Maine or on the lands of either of said States, and the extent of said trespassing, at what time and by whom the same were committed, and whether the same was done under the pretext of authority from any grant, licence, or permit, and, if so, from whom such pretended authority was claimed to be derived.

In addition to the inquiries respecting the titles to the land it will be desirable that you shall obtain information respecting the Geography of the country.  You will observe the lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams of water, the falls and mill sites on them and their capacity for navigation and for floating logs and timber.

The Geology of the country as far as it may be observed by you will be noted.  The soil and productions of the country will require your attention, especially the pine and other valuable timber, and all things which in any way indicate the advantage of the country, or determine the value of the land.

A daily journal of your proceedings will be convenient in which may be noted whatever may be interesting, or calculated to impart information respecting the situation and value of the part of the State of Maine, North of the line running West from the Monument.

You are requested to return to the land office a copy of your journal with such other information as you may deem interesting respecting the country through which you may pass.


Daniel Rose, Land Agent of the State of Maine

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Last revised 9 Sep 2004
©2004 C.Gagnon