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March 10, 2010

Armed Occupation Act

The Florida Armed Occupation Act of 1842 (5 U.S. Statutes 502) was passed as an incentive to populate Florida. The main terms of the Act read like public policy via Robert Heinlein.

The Act granted 160 acres (0.6 km²) of unsettled land south of the line separating townships 9 and 10 South. (a East/West line about three miles (5 km) north of Palatka and about ten miles (16 km) south of Newnansville) to any head of a family as long he satisfied the following conditions:[1]

* be a resident of Florida and not having 160 acres (0.6 km²) of land in Florida when asking for the permit;
* get a permit from the Lands Office;
* he or his heirs reside for five consecutive years on the grant ;
* clear, enclose and cultivate 5 acres (20,000 m2) of land during the first year;
* build a house on the lot during the first year;
* the land should be two or more miles away from a garrisoned military post.

The last statement implied that the person should bear arms for his own protection.

Actually, the last statement implied the new homestead is the functional equivalent of a garrisoned military outpost; a redoubt of civilization held by force against Nature and against the barbarians.

A lot has changed in the world in 170 years. There has been a bigger change in our souls.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at March 10, 2010 10:03 AM