Perry County Landowner Resources

Warrantee Maps by Barner


1872 Atlas of Cumberland Co. by Beers (scroll down)

Ancestor Tracks is committed to becoming a one-stop resource for researchers of early Pennsylvania landowners. In addition to publishing our own books, we are posting images of 19th century maps and atlases that we personally took in the Library of Congress. Our goal is to post landowner maps, or links to other websites with landowner maps, for every county in the state.

Original Land Owners

The state of Pennsylvania began platting the exact metes-and-bounds tracts of the earliest landowners, township-by-township, starting in 1907, but the Land Office only completed about 1/3 of the state before the project ended. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania did not plat Perry County. See our explanation of how land was transferred from the government to individual owners from the earliest days of settlement.

Researchers are indeed fortunate, however, that Hayes R. Eschenmann began to systematically research and map the tracts of the earliest landowners of Columbia County, aligning their surveys with USGS topographic quadrangle maps. He published volumes for four Columbia County quadrangles before his passing, and his project was taken up by his editor, Paul Barner, who completed the rest of the county plus 11 maps for Perry County.

The Barner pamphlets will probably give you enough data to access copies of the warrant, original survey, and patent in the Pennsylvania State Archives, but if you need to find the date, book and page of the original warrant, survey, and patent for your ancestor, you will need to search through the Cumberland County Warrant Register on the Pennsylvania State Archives website where each page of each county’s ledger is a separate pdf file, or download and save to your computer the entire set of 67 county Warrant Registers plus 3 pre-1733 ledgers called First Landowners of PA: Colonial and State Warrant Registers in the PA Archives, Harrisburg, 1682-ca 1940 ($35).   Once you have found the information, you can access the free online surveys, and you can order copies of the original documents from the Pennsylvania State Archives in Harrisburg using their order form.  Please note that these land transfers predate the deed books located in each county because they deal with the first transfer of land to private individuals at the state level.

If you cannot find an original landowner’s name in the Warrant Registers, the next place to look is in Pennsylvania’s index to Patent Registers ($35). Within an index covering the relevant years, the names are grouped alphabetically by the first letter of the patentee’s surname, then grouped by volume number of Patent Book, and finally arranged chronologically by date of patent. Thus, you have to look through the entire alphabetical section (which may be as little as one page to as many as 50) to be sure you don’t miss anyone.

11 volumes of First Families of Perry County have been published, each of which includes a 22″ X 30″ map showing the tracts, and they may be ordered for $18 each plus shipping and handling. The index to the volumes is available on this site, as well as a key to the Quadrangle abbreviations. The volumes available at Cumberland County Historical Society are:

Volume I: Western Perry Quadrangle
Volume 2: Spruce Hill Quadrangle 
Volume 3: Andersonburg Quadrangle
Volume 4: Mexico and Millerstown Quadrangles
Volume 5: Ickesburg Quadrangle
Volume 6: Landisburg Quadrangle 
Volume 7: Newport Quadrangle

Volume 8: Shermans Dale Quadrangle
Volume 9: Reward, Millersburg, and Dalmatia Quadrangles
Volume 10: Duncannon and Halifax Quadrangles
Volume 11: Wertzville and the West Shore 

Also see this site for three other volumes containing partial Perry County quadrangles.

An excellent 1863 Map of the Counties of Perry, Juniata and Mifflin from actual surveys by and under the direction of G. M. Hopkins is posted through the Leventhal Map Collection at Boston Public Library. To see residents at that time, click on it and zoom in with your cursor’s wheel to see names and locations.

19th-Century Residents

As we have done for numerous Pennsylvania counties (hover over each county on the PA map), we are posting free, downloadable township images from the Atlas of Perry, Juniata and Mifflin Counties ublished in 1877 by Pomeroy, Whitman & Co.  We hope these images will be useful when coupled with the 1860-1880 census and downloadable histories of Perry County. Four excellent resources for this area have been printed:  (1) The 1886 History of That Part of the Susquehanna and Juniata Valleys Embraced in the Counties of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union and Snyder is online (Volume I and Volume II); (2) the 1889 History of the Early Settlement of the Juniata Valley: Embracing an Account of the Early Pioneers and the Trials and Privations Incident to the Settlement of the Valley; and (3) the 1913 A History of the Juniata Valley and Its People (Volume IVolume II, and Volume III); and (4) Rupp’s 1846 History and Topography of Dauphin, Cumberland, Franklin, Bedford, Adams, and Perry Counties. All can be downloaded and saved to your computer. 

1886 Map: "Townships of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union & Snyder Counties" from Everts, Peck & Richards


Click on the township of your choice below. Once the images are loaded, they can be enlarged by clicking on them. If an image doesn’t enlarge, right-click on it and choose “Open Image in New Tab.”  When it is opened in a new tab, you will be able to zoom in. You can also save the images.

While the map in the Library of Congress, is in the public domain the images we have taken belong to us and are not to be used for commercial use. For those wishing to use them for personal use (including illustrating a family history you are working on), we give permission to use them, but we would appreciate attribution to Ancestor Tracks. It takes much time and effort to locate, process, edit, and post these and the many other county images we have posted, so we appreciate this courtesy.