Zeroing in on George Barclay’s land holdings!

In order to read the land descriptions for George’s patents and deeds we need to understand the area we are describing.

Cass County Townships - Township Atlas

The above is a map of the townships in Cass County, Minnesota.  The area we are interested in is just next to the corner of the right angle where the Barclay and Wilson Townships are located. Click on the image and it will enlarge so you can read the information.  The blank area to the south and east of Cass is Crow Wing County.

Our Target Area of Townships - Cass County

According to the Logsled’s book we are targeting Pine River, Barclay, Walden and Wilson Townships.

Another view of the Townships

The  map above gives the township description:  T138R30 for Pine River, T137R30 for Walden, T138R29 for Barclay and T137R29 for Wilson. 

According to the Cass County Heritage history book published in 1999 by the Cass County Historical Society the township names and entities were petitioned for and established around 1901 and 1910.  So George was more interested in the T138R30 format back in 1874. Using the township names helps in today’s world if you want to do comparisons.

I found the above map at the Public Land Survey Plat Maps of Minnesota website. You can see that Crow Wing County cuts right through T138R29 and T137R29.  This website gives more description, a glossary which can help and you can click and pull up the old surveys done in 1865.  

Township Grid

The above grid with numbers is how townships are laid out.  The numbers represent the sections of a township.  So we will be interested in sections 1 and 12 in Waldon Twp. top right, sections 31, 32 in Barclay Twp. bottom left, and sections 6, 5, 7, 8 in Wilson Twp. top left and possibly 36 in Pine River Twp. lower right. We might find some land spilling into Crow Wing County. 

Further defining sections

The above image is a section divided into 1/4 sections of 160 acres.  The quarter section is broken down further so NW1/4 might be quartered again with a NW, NE, SW and SE section of 40 acres. 

Now life is not that tidy so things get creative at this point because landforms get in the way like a river or a lake.  See below and click on the image to make it larger.

Sections Divided Up

This information will help to understand the patents that George A. Barclay purchased.  Don’t let the current highway #371 confused you as it slices diagonally across many of these sections. 

It has been a long time since George established himself in Pine River and things have changed dramatically.


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