Thursday, September 26, 2013

George Jarvis Files the Claim to His City Lot

As I mentioned, I'm reading the Washington County Probate Court Records. While waiting for some other scanned pages to save to my thumb drive yesterday evening, I scrolled ahead in the microfilm and saw this item. All the townspeople had to file claim to their lots with the government. George Jarvis did so on June 5, 1871.

The record notes:
George Jarvis, Sworn, Says, he drew Lot number Six (6) in Block Number Two (2), official map, plat A, From the City, ten years ago. 
Was the first man who moved with his family on the City plot after the lots were given out. Has resided on said lot No. Six, Block Two, with his family ever Since.
Here's a bit of the Pioneer Map of St. George showing the Jarvis lot, situated as it is partway between the Tabernacle and the Temple. The Jarvis home is, of course, no longer there.

Each block was 32 rods square, and each lot was 8x16 rods, or 132 ft x 264 ft, equalling .8 acres per lot. The blocks were separated by streets 90 feet wide.

Here is a picture of the Jarvis home in St. George. There was previously a porch, and the traces of it can still be seen. It looks like it was a small brick or adobe house with a lean-to on the right. The family surrounded the home with vegetable and flower gardens and trees.

And here is a picture of old St. George. The Tabernacle is in the bottom center.


"Jarvis Home in St. George, Porch Removed," as found at George and Ann Prior Jarvis Family Website, courtesy of Ellen Raye.

Miller, Albert E., J. B. Ireland, Nicholas G. Morgan, et al., "Pioneer Map City of St. George, Washington County–Utah." Salt Lake City, Utah: n.d. As found at George and Ann Prior Jarvis Family Website.

"St. George, Utah," as found in Margaret Godfrey Jarvis Overson. George Jarvis and Joseph George De Friez Genealogy. Mesa, Arizona: M. J. Overson, 1957.

Washington County, Utah Probate Court Records, FHL Film 484838, Book B, 253-254.


  1. This is so neat! Cool, as they say now. Your research for one project gleans material for another. Thanks for your continued tutorials. I especially appreciated your recent post at Keepapitchinin, “Lives of Ancestors All Remind Us”: Family History Books.

  2. I just did some research into this area recently. All of the land in Utah was confiscated by the U.S. Government and private ownership of property was not allowed until 1869. This is the reason all of these applications were made in the early 1870s.

  3. Thank you, Bessie. I do hope you and other Morgan cousins who may see that don't mind me using the biography of John Morgan as an example of a book with "known problems." It was the short and easy way to explain the point, and commenters were able to come up with much better examples.

    Thanks, Dad! I imagine that Andrew Karl Larson explains all of that in I Was Called to Dixie, but I haven't looked yet.

    I'll add a picture of the Jarvis home and their lot that they were so proud of.

  4. James Tanner,

    You may have seen this already, but just in case you haven't, for more information, check out: Thomas G. Alexander, “Conflict and Fraud: Utah Public Land Surveys in the 1850s, the Subsequent Investigation and Problems with the Land Disposal System,” Utah Historical Quarterly 80 no. 2 (Spring 2012)