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Pensacola imprints and land grants

 Collection — Box: 150
Identifier: MSS 0-155

Scope and Contents

This collection of documents is from the large collection of papers of the British army paymaster's office which was in the possession of the Manchester autograph dealer, John Gray Bell, in 1857, and which was bought by Sir Thomas Phillips. It has been supposed that the documents were removed from Pensacola following the surrender of the town to Galvez on May 8, 1781.

This collection contains 103 land grants issued in Pensacola, Florida, during the administration of Governor Peter Chester, each document signed by both he and Elias Durnford. 101 of the documents are printed forms filled out in manuscript, and two are entirely in manuscript. There are 36 surveyor's maps attached to the documents, and 7 maps that are unattached. This collection is signficant to the history of American printing, as well as to the history of West Florida during the period of British possession, which dated from the transfer of the territory by Spain at the Treaty of Paris 1763, to its recapture by Galvez, the Spanish Governor of Louisiana, during the American Revolution in 1781. Seventy of the printed forms used are the product of a press operated by the British administration in Pensacola. Most of the papers bear the watermarks of "Miguel Losa," "M. Losa" or a coat of arms resembling the Navarre arms.


  • Created: 1775-1780
  • Other: Date acquired: 1957

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to all researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to quote, publish, broadcast or otherwise reproduce from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Associate Dean for Special Collections & Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Florida State University Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.

Biographical or Historical Information

The British occupation of West Florida (at which time Florida extended to and beyond the Mississippi River, as shown by land grants and surveyor's maps) led to the first of the long series of "Florida land booms," as the province was the last one of eastern North America to have at that time large tracts of unoccupied land, and as grants were being made in large numbers in the hope of inducing settlers to move there. Veterans of the French and Indian War were allowed tracts raning from 5000 acres for a general officer to 50 acres for a private, in addition to which any person moving there was allowed 100 acres, plus 50 acres for every other member of his family or household with him.


3.00 folders (3 folders.)

Language of Materials


Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Kraus Periodicals, Inc.

Pensacola imprints and land grants
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the FSU Special Collections & Archives Repository

116 Honors Way
PO Box 3062047
Tallahassee FL 32306-2047 US