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30 June, 17:14

What was the purpose of the Land Ordinance of 1785?

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  1. 30 June, 17:23
    The purpose of the Land Ordinance of 1785 was to enable the Congress to have a stable revenue source without the need to impose direct taxes on the people and also at the same time provide a standardized system of managing the lands.


    The United States Congress adopted the Land Ordinance Act of 1785 on 20th May, 1785. This enables the standardized system for farmlands in the undeveloped west area to be purchasable by the settlers. This was a result of the Congress's attempts to maintain a revenue stream as direct taxation wasn't possible. So the sale of land provided the best source of revenue.

    The earlier 1784 Ordinance written by Thomas Jefferson did not specify how the lands should be managed or how territories will be governed. This 1785 Ordinance made it possible for the government to systematically manage the lands, also at the same time getting revenues alongside it. It became the basis of land acquisition policy until the passing of the 1862 Homestead Act. It established the basis of the Public Land Survey System, thereby making the managing of land easier for the government. According to this ordinance, surveillance of land was to be done into square townships which can also be subdivided and resold by the settlers and other subsequent landowners.
  2. 30 June, 17:39
    Settlers could purchase title to farmland in undeveloped west.
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