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Original 1818 Town Plan of Alton by Rufus Easton


Easton, Rufus, “Original 1818 Town Plan of Alton by Rufus Easton,” Madison Historical, accessed May 23, 2024,


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This town plan for Alton was plotted by St. Louis resident and Missouri territory delegate Rufus Easton in 1817. He named the town in honor of his son, Alton R. Easton. This plat also shows Langdon, Alby, and George streets, which Easton likely named after some of his other children.1 According to writing on the plat, Rufus Easton signed and delivered the plat on January 1, 1818. It was then approved on March 26, 1818 by John T. Lusk, a justice of the peace for Madison County.2 There are two copies: the first is on cloth; the second on paper. The map shows the property divisions of the town, including which properties were already sold. The edge of the Mississippi River is also visible, on which the river landing is planned and a promenade set aside for common use.


  • Front

    The Town of Alton in Madison County, Illinois

    Memorandum and Condition, This Town is laid out on the express terms and conditions that the exclusive right of Surveying to and from the same is reserved to the undersigned proprietor of said Town his heirs and assigns forever and landing – ground, streets, roads, Commons + ways to and from the river Mississippi are to be used as rights of way in Common only to all persons except as to the right of Ferrying as aforesaid which right and privilege of Ferrying or establishing or keeping of a Ferry or Ferries in said Town cannot be a acquired by any owner or purchaser or grantee of a lot or lots, or by any body politic or corporate or any person whatsoever but by purchase or discent [sic] from the proprietor his heirs or assigns. And it is expressly understood that all the Streets roads, Commons and grounds set apart for landing of vessels or boats or for loading or unloading or other publick use are laid out on the terms and Conditions above expressed of which all persons will take notice. Dated the 1st day of January 1818 –

    Signed sealed and delivered

    Rufus Easton (seal)

    By presence of

    Wm. Hancock

    Wm. Beaty

  • Back

    Illinois Territory, Madison County

    Personally came before me the undersigned one of the Justices of the Peace in and for the county of Madison aforesaid on the twenty sixth day of March one thousand eight hundred and eighteen William Beaty, one of the subscribing witnesses within Named and set to the withier Instrument in writing and being only sworn did depose and say that Rufus Easton did acknowledge in his presence that he signed, sealed, and delivered the said Instrument of writing as his voluntary act and deed and desired that the same might be recorded as such –

    Sworn to and subscribed this twenty sixth day of March 1818 – before me J.T. Lusk

    Wm. Beaty


  • government
  • law
  • map


Easton, Rufus


January 1, 1818

Relevant Encyclopedia Article




  • Miscellaneous Document


  • jpg


  • Alton, Illinois


  • MCR-D-0002
  1. History of Madison County, Illinois, Illustrated. With Biographical Sketches of many Prominent Men and Pioneers (Edwardsville: W. R. Brink and Company, 1882), 375.
  2. W. T. Norton, ed., Centennial History of Madison County, Illinois, and Its People, 1812 to 1912(Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1912), 454.
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