This ledger provides an early record of US government land sale to the state of Kansas. It was initially purchased by the railroads for sale to private individuals, including two wealthy ranchers. The entries give chronological documentation representing a continuum of land use and progression of technology. It tells the story of how two prominent Chase County ranches developed, ultimately becoming Spring Hill and Deer Park Farms, part of which which make up Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve. This is the story of the end of the open range to the time of large enclosed corporate ranches, ending in 1924.
It also documents when the land was first leased for gas and oil exploration when owned by C.C. and Nannie Patton in 1916. A lease agreement describes their free use of these natural resources for heating the large ranch house and other buildings/uses as desired. These documents give clues to when significant modifications to the home interior and use of stock tank heaters occurred, and gas lines and pumps are still in the ranch house and across the landscape.
The entire document has been scanned and is now housed in the online archives of Kansas Memory of the Kansas State Historical Society in Topeka, KS. This land abstract was a land owner's copy.