Nebraska Homestead Files Go Digital

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BEATRICE, Neb. The Homestead National Monument of America has completed a 12 year project that placed thousands of land records online.

"Nebraska is the first of the 30 homesteading states to have
this completed," said Mark Engler. "And Nebraska is the largest of the
homesteading states from the standpoint of percentage of land that
was homesteaded."

The records, known as the Nebraska Homestead Final Certificate Case Files, include land applications, the type of work the land was used for, size of the home, sale receipts, and more.

"These records as far as I'm concerned have the most personal
information that anybody can find in any of our record sets that are found in the national archive," said Historian Blake Bell. "These records tell you exactly what your ancestors did to survive."

The records are free for the public to access at the monument.

All of the original files are stored in Washington D.C. were they were scanned and uploaded to the web.

According to Engler, there are approximately 77,000 files containing more than 1.6 million digital images.

The University of Nebraska, Lincoln was a partner in the project.