Frequently Asked Questions

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What the heck is a plat directory anyway?
A plat directory is a land ownership map book. Each book shows every parcel of land within a specific county. Parcels of land that are 5 acres or more are labeled with the owner's name.

T-R-S, What does that stand for?
T - Township, R- Range, S - Section. Please see the "Tutorial" page for a further explaination.

Why do some parcels not show an owner's name?
In our books, any parcel with less than 5 acres is simply too small to label. If a large parcel of
land has no owner listed, it means that the information was not available at the time of publication.

When was my book published?
Look for the Copyright date on the bottom of the front cover.

Where can I buy a book? consists of three branch offices who each handle a selection of plat directories. Please refer to the "Contact Us" page for phone numbers of the branch office that handles the state in which you are looking for plat directories. We do have distributors in most counties who sell books for their respective counties only. To find a local distributor or to purchase multiple county plat directories, please call one of the branch offices of
Great Mid-Western Publishing handles plat directories for Ohio, Illinois, Indiana & Pennsylvania
County Plat Book Service handles plat directories for Alabama, Mississippi & Georgia
Florida Plats handles plat directories for Florida & Georgia

How often are books updated or published?
We try to update each county directory at least every 3 - 5 years. We know this sounds like a long
time and land can change ownership a lot in that span, but any book is still useful in the fact that
the T-R-S never change. A simple phone call to the courthouse can tell you the current owner of a parcel of land if you provide the T-R-S.

A bit of trivia - Any book we publish is never going to be 100% accurate because the land we labeled today, can be sold tomorrow. Our plat directories are, simply, a very useful reference guide.

What information is labeled in each parcel?
Each parcel consisting of 5 acres or more is labeled with owner's name, parcel number and acreage.
In the smaller parcels, we can't always fit an entire name, so we put the land owner's initials. You can then use the initials, along with the T-R-S from the map page, and locate the full owner name in the index.

What is the number before and/or after the slash?
In each parcel, we label the parcel number, followed by a slash, then the acreage.
Example - Joe Landowner
                     2/43 ac        This tells you that Mr. Landowner owns parcel 2 that consists of 43 acres.

Some of our older books have the parcel number listed towards the top of the parcel with the
acreage listed just below the owner. Example -           2

                                                                       Joe Landowner
                                                                             43 ac

What does "et al" mean?
Frequently, you will notice the use of et al, et vir or et ux in our books following a land owner's name. These are legal terms derived from the Latin language. The translation of these terms is-
et al - and others
et vir - and husband
et ux - and wife
So, a parcel labeled with ' Joe Landowner et al ' tells you that Mr. Landowner, along with others, owns this piece of land. Mr. Landowner's name is placed in the book because he was listed first in the Ownership information.

Where can I find an explaination of the Land Survey System?
In the first few pages of each book is a detailed explaination of the Land Survey System.

What scale is used for the maps in the books?
All of our newer books use a scale of 2.5 inches = 1 mile. Some of our older books use a scale
of 1.75 inches = 1 mile

How do I find the page number that a parcel is on if I know the landowner's name?
Simply locate the landowner's name in the index, see the T-R-S given and use the Township Maps key to find the page number.

How do I find parcel information if I do not know the landowner's name?
Please refer to the "Tutorial" page for an explaination of how to use a plat directory

Where does the information in the books come from?
The land ownership information is acquired from each county courthouse.

Where can I find out about placing an ad in a county plat directory?
Plat directories are an excellent place to advertise your business. Contact one of the offices listed
on the "Contact Us" page for more information regarding advertising.

A bit of trivia  - An average of 7 people have access to EVERY book we sell. Plus, your ad is good
for the life of the book, not just a day or two like when a newspaper ad is purchased. That's continuous exposure to thousands of people right where you do business!

Why are some places on the maps shaded gray?
The shading signifies incorporated areas of a city or city limits. It also indicates government owned land, such as National Forests, etc.

How big is a plat book?
We only make one size of plat directory. Our books are spiral bound, 8.5" X 11" and vary in thickness. Most books are about the size of a one subject spiral notebook.