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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 44

Free Grants Or Homestead Rights

Free Grants Or Homestead Rights.

Free grants of quarter sections, 160 acres, are made to any male or female who is the head of a family, or to any male not the head of a family, who has attained the age of eighteen years, on condition of three years settlement, from the time of entering upon possession. A person entering for a homestead may also enter the adjoining quarter section if vacant as a pre-emption right and enter into immediate possession thereof, and on fulfilling the condition of his homestead, may obtain a patent for his pre-emption right on payment for the same at the rate of one dollar per acre. When two or more persons have settled on, and seek to obtain a title to, the same land, the homestead right shall be in him who made the first settlement. If both have made improvements, a division of the land may be ordered in such manner as may preserve to the said parties their several improvements.

Questions as to the homestead right arising between different settlers shall be investigated by the local agent of the division in which the land is situated, whose report shall be referred to the Minister of the Interior, for decision.

Every person claiming a homestead right from actual settlement must file his application for such claim with the local agent previously to such settlement, if in surveyed lands; if in unsurveyed lands, within three months after such land shall have been surveyed.

No patent will be granted for land till the expiration of three years from the time of entering into possession of it.

When both parents die, without having devised the land, and leave a child or children under age, it shall be lawful for the executors page 50 (if any) of the last surviving parent, or the guardian of such child or children, with the approval of a Judge of a Superior Court of the Province or Territory in which the lands lie, to sell the lands for the benefit of the infant or infants, but for no other purpose; and the purchaser in such a case shall acquire the homestead right by such purchase, and on carrying out the unperformed conditions of such right, shall receive a patent for the land, upon payment of the office fees, $10.

The title to lands shall remain in the Crown until the issue of the patent therefor, and such lands shall not be liable to be taken in execution before the issue of the patent.

If a settler voluntarily relinquishes his claim, or has been absent from the land entered by him for more than six months in any year, then the right to such land shall be forfeited.

A patent may be obtained by any person before three years, on payment of price at the date of entry, and making proof of settlement and cultivation for not less than twelve months from date of entry.

All assignments and transfer of homestead rights before the issue of the patent shall be null and void, but shall be deemed evidence of abandonment of the right.

These provisions apply only to homesteads and not to lands set apart as timber lands, or to those on which coal or minerals, at the time of entry, are known to exist.