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It depends where your property is located. If it was covered by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), then the National Archives in Washington, DC (firstname.lastname@example.org) may have land records about the first person who purchased the land. If it was not, then your best chance of finding anything would be to go to the County Court House of the county where the property is located and work backwards through the land records in the Records of Deeds Office (this name is used in Pennsylvania, your state may be different) to see who owed it before you. County deed/land records were microfilmed during the 1970s and 1980s by the Mormon Church. These microfilms were digitized and are available online via Ancestry.com. There will be a fee for this service. Or you may view these records online at one NARA's facilities for free via ALIC. For the nearest NARA location, please consult our web page at http://www.archives.gov/locations/. Good luck with your research! Let us know how you are doing and what you were able to find.