b'In 1800 William Henry Harrison[see years. Those payments had a six-percentgraphic (LLL)] , who had been serving as interest attached to them, encouragingsecretary to the Northwest Territory owners to pay off their land debt moreand who had just been elected as a dele- quickly.gate to Congress, came up with a good The price of the land was arrived atplan. His plan was accepted by Congress by public auction. All those who wereand was named the Harrison Land Act, or interested in a parcel of land would bidthe Act of May 10, 1800. It called for on it. The person with the highest bidland offices, places of business, to be would win the right to purchase the landestablished in Steubenville, Cincinnati, at that price. The minimum parcel wasChillicothe, and Marietta. Individuals set at 320 acres. interested in buying federal land could go Within the land office, two mainto one of these offices to find out about positions were created. The Receiver ofthe land and to make their purchases. A Public Monies handled the financialperson no longer had to be part of a land details of collecting the money for thecompany to get a good deal on land. land. The Registrar was the person whoAccording to Harrisons plan, land recorded the transactions (Thomascould be bought on credit. This also Worthington, brother-in-law of Edwardhelped individuals who were not wealthy Tiffin, was in charge of the land office inbecome landowners. The buyer would put Chillicothe). Once a buyer paid for hisdown five percent of the land, the Registrar issued him a final cer-cost of the land tificate. This certificate was then sent(which included the to Washington, D.C., so its U.S. Patentfees to survey the could be issued. This sometimes took aland) on the day of long time to complete. The Presidentthe sale. Then himself had to sign every patent (untilanother 20 percent 1833). Then the patent was returned tohad to be paid within the land office from which it originated,40 days. A total of 25 and the owner received it. Interestingly,In 1800 Williampercent had been many people never picked up theirHenry Harrison,paid up to this patents. The land office in Chillicotheserved as secretary to point. Finally, the still had thousands of unclaimed patentthe Northwest owner would make papers when it closed in 1876.Territory. He would go on to becomethree annual pay- The first land office was officiallythe 9th Presidentments of 25 opened in July 1800 in Steubenville, Ohioof the United States(March 4, 1841 to percent each [see graphic (MMM) page 65] . Over theApril 4, 1841). within the second, next 20 years, nearly 9 million acres ofGraphic (LLL) third, and fourth Ohio land were sold.page 64'