Delaware, Land Records, 1677–1947. Recorder of Deeds, Kent County, RG 3555, Subgroup 000, Series 021. Delaware Public Archives, Dover, Delaware.
Delaware, Land Records, 1677–1947. Recorder of Deeds, Sussex County, RG 4555, Subgroup 000, Series 030. Delaware Public Archives, Dover, Delaware.
Delaware is a state-land state, meaning that following the Revolutionary War, it continued to grant property within its boundaries, as it had in its Colonial days. This collection includes the recorded transfers of property by grant or by deed. Most Delaware land had been granted by the time of statehood, so in the years following the Revolutionary War, you will find deeds recording the transfer of lands between private parties as they were transcribed into the registers of the county recorder of deeds.
The records will typically include the names of the grantor (party or parties releasing the land) and grantee (the party or parties purchasing the land), as well as the names of neighbors whose land borders the property, previous owners, and witnesses. The amount of the payment, the dates the deed was written and recorded, and counties and states of residence can be found, as will the terms of the deed and any necessary dower releases.
The description and location of the property can give you valuable insights into the location of the property as well as any natural features that could have significance, such as waterways and other hazards that may have helped determine where your ancestor “went into town” to conduct business.
Beyond deeds you will find related records, including releases, directions to sell, releases of judgments, deeds of releases, agreements, plots, powers of attorney, acquittances, certificates of condemnation, separation agreements, and mortgages. Supporting documentation can include military discharges, bonds, leases, powers of attorney, and more. In the New Castle County volumes, some births were recorded.
Note: In some record books, where original materials were in poor condition, they were replaced with photostats.