from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A legal grant of land to settlers in colonial America


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • A headright was a tract of land, usually fifty acres, given to anyone over age fifteen—male or female—who settled in Virginia.

    History of American Women

  • This was known as the headright system of granting land.

    Domestic Life in Virginia in the Seventeenth Century

  • Georgia continued its headright system until past 1800.27 Raucous squabbles, arising under state and federal pre-emption laws, and the law and practice of local land offices, were meat and bread to Western lawyers.

    A History of American Law

  • The women who availed themselves of the headright during its brief existence, however, demonstrated their independence and willingness to pursue options other than the traditional ones that society assigned them.

    History of American Women

  • This provision for the fifty-acre headright was set up for the seven-year period prior to Midsummer Day of 1625, but it continued beyond this date as the essential key to Virginia's land policy of the seventeenth century.

    Mother Earth Land Grants in Virginia 1607-1699

  • Grant by headright continued immediately to account for the great majority of land patents issued, but after the first quarter of the eighteenth century it gradually fell into disuse.

    Mother Earth Land Grants in Virginia 1607-1699

  • Therefore, all persons so listed under the headright claim cannot be considered indentured servants.

    Mother Earth Land Grants in Virginia 1607-1699

  • Upon completion of the survey and of marking the boundaries, a copy of the record along with the headright certificate was presented to the secretary's office where a patent was prepared and a notation made of those imported.

    Mother Earth Land Grants in Virginia 1607-1699

  • King Charles &c. Use of the headright had been adopted by the company as an expedient to increase population of the colony and to encourage immigration without further expenditure from the company treasury.

    Mother Earth Land Grants in Virginia 1607-1699

  • After this term expired, royal governors continued to honor headright claims based on immigration, although no direct authorization for such action had come from the crown.

    Mother Earth Land Grants in Virginia 1607-1699


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