Yes, I have an old abstract on another parcel in that area, it was for another ancestor. So they do exist if they can be found. It was just dumb luck that I found that one. It was in a drawer in an air-conditioning repair shop……..long story.
My research partner made a trip to the property and talked to the present owners. They gave her what little info that they had. That info was from the Ownbys who bought that land in 1874 to the present. Nothing before that, or as early as 1842. One of the Finley sons was a witness on the land transaction when the Ownbys purchased the land from the govt in 1874. I don’t have the land transaction, only the notes from the present owners.
I have a letter, half drafted, that I intend to send to the landowners of the property in question to see if they had any additional info. So your suggestion that a neighbor may have an abstract is a good one. I’ll check with the surrounding land owners also.
It is a mystery how the land could have belonged to my Finleys 30 years before the government sold it to Ownby. Obviously I am missing something here.