A really cool feature of the Duplin County Register of Deeds site, duplinrod.com, is the land grant map.  How many times have you read a grant or deed and tried to figure out where the land was located?  Well, when it comes to grants made in Duplin County and are now Sampson and Wayne Counties, you don’t have to.  These maps were not drawn by a professional surveyor and are not certified, nor are they in any way official.  This does not, however, lessen their usefulness.  Here’s an example, the following patent was entered by my 5th great-grandfather, Nicholas Bowden (or Bourden, which is the older spelling), 18 May 1773:

Nicholas Bowden 300 acres Duplin On the North side of Goshen swamp on the head waters of Cowhole and white oak branches Beginning at a large old pine by a pond and runs hence So. 17 Wt. 150 poles to a pine at James Hursts corner thence along his line No. 73 Wt. 127 poles to a small red oak at his other corner thence along his other line So. 17 Wt. 82 poles to a pine near William Vinings corner thence along Vineings line No. 33 Wt. 160 poles to a white oak his corner by hoop-pole branch thence along his other line So. 77 Wt. 100 poles to a stake at William Bizzells line thence along Bizzells line No. 45 Et. 220 poles thence to the Begining.
Dated 22d July 1774                                                  Jo. Martin

Here’s what that looks like on the land grant map:

You’ll notice that the John Shuffield and Levin Watkins grants had not, yet, been issued, and that land that was granted John Oates in 1747 belonged to William Bizzell in 1774.

In another example, I used two different sections of the map to put together this patent issued Nicholas’s older brother, Samuel.

Samuel Bowden 320 Acres Duplin North side of Goshen Swamp and East side of Bear Marsh Beginning at a pine and runs W 146 poles to a pine on Moses Tyler’s Line thence along his Line S 10 W 80 poles to a pine his Corner thence Henry Goodman’s Line S 87 E 62 poles to a black jack thence joining Taylor’s Line S 75 E 320 poles thence to the Beginning dated 11th December 1770.