All of the ownership transactions with regard to the Boland Corridor are a matter of public record. Residents can research the history of the transactions on their property by going to the Washtenaw County Register of Deeds Office in Ann Arbor, or by visiting their website
From this site you can use their online services to access and print the records. You must Register with the site to use their service. The fees are $1.20 per page.
You can register by clicking the “Register” box in the upper left hand corner of the page. There, you will create your own username and password. Once the registration process is complete, you can then Login to the system.
All county has a searchable database for all deeds dated after 1968. You will need to use their Historical Index search to research transactions that are older.
Searching Records from 1969 – present
Use the document search to search for records dating 1969 to present. You can search by name, either the Grantor ( seller of the property ) or Grantee ( buyer of the property ). This is relatively straightforward. Once you find the deed indicating who you bought your property from, you can then work your way backwards.
When searching by name, you will many hits for your search. You will need to sort carefully through the search results to find the appropriate one, pertaining to your lot.
Once you have the information from the most recent sale of your property, you can also use the “Advanced” search, and use the Quarter Section/Section/Township/Range information. This kind of search, however, can be difficult to use, as land is split/sold over time. Searching by name appears to be the most straightforward way to do the research.
Using the Historical Index
Once you start reaching back in time prior to 1969, you will need to use the Historical Index. If you are working backwards, you will know who last purchased the property. You will want to search for that name in the Historical Index under “Deed Index to Grantor”.
As you will not know the date of the last transaction, you may need to visually inspect several of the indexes to find the correct transaction. Once you do find it, you will need to note the Liber and Page number of that transaction. For example, here is an excerpt of the Historical Index from 1942:
If we want to find the Deed where John Hamilton purchased land from Harry Peet, we would use Liber 360 ( number at the top ) and page 405 to pull up the specific document.
Sale of Boland Corridor to Jackson and Ann Arbor Railroad Company, 1904
For you reference, here is a copy of deed that shows the sale of all of the parcels that were a part of the Boland Corridor to the Jackson and Ann Arbor Railroad Company in 1904. This document mentions all of the land owners, who signed the original agreements with William Boland in 1901. This information may help you in your own document search.
Good Luck !