From Nova Scotia south to Florida, the British Crown awarded land to approximately 6,500 soldiers and sailors for service in the various colonial wars. Grants of land were generally made on the basis of rank, with veterans from colonies with no vacant lands sometimes taking up land in other colonies; certain Massachusetts soldiers receiving grants of land in Virginia, for example; or Virginia militiamen drawing land in Kentucky. Land grants provide the clues for such migrations, while other grants sometimes reveal group migrations from coastal settlements into the interior of the country.
All 6,500 soldiers known to have received land grants for their participation in the numerous conflicts with the French and their Indian allies, as well as in various colonial insurrections, are listed here with details of their place and dates of service, rank, military campaigns, location of bounty land grants and donation land grants, acreage, and, most importantly, assignment of title to heirs, relatives, and friends.
Generally speaking, bounty land grants were offered as an inducement to perform military service while donation land grants were awarded to a veteran or his heirs as a reward for service once the conflict was over. Not always altruistic, grants of land were sometimes made to establish buffers on the frontier between Indians and European settlers or to alleviate population pressures on coastal settlements.
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