The charters that established the original thirteen colonies were vague in their description of the boundaries of the colonies. In some cases, more than one colony had a legal claim to the same western lands. After much controversy and compromise, each new state that entered into the federal union gave up its claim to western lands. The lands were then placed in the public domain for the benefit of all states. Virginia, which had given up vast claims as part of the compromise, reserved an are in Ohio called the Virginia Military District. It was bounded by the Scioto River to the north and the east and by the Little Miami River to the west.
Large amounts of this land were given to Virginians who had fought in the Revolutionary War. The amount of land depended on the rank and length of service of the individuals. The location and shape of the tracts were largely unrestricted. Claimants arriving first chose the land they deemed most desirable with latecomers choosing from was remained available. Original survey of land in the Virginia Military District were called Virginia Military Surveys (VMS). Although they were rough and prone to error, these original surveys were the basis for all later surveys and land claims. In 1852, Virginia turned over all remaining land to the federal government. In 1871, Congress granted the land to the State of Ohio, which used it to create and endowment for The Ohio State University.
Please note that the maps in this book were created before the establishment of Taylor Township in 1849.
|Virginia Military Survey (VMS) Maps|