I've now found an instance of what I was looking for in this book written 182 years ago, in 1839.
This is from page 14:
In the establishment of the new States the navigation of rivers is declared to be at all times free to all citizens of the United States, without payment of any tolls or duties;
and at the admission of Louisiana as a State in 1812 it was a condition, that all its laws should be promulgated, its records preserved, and its judicial and legislative written proceedings conducted, in the language in which the laws and the judicial and legislative written proceedings of the United States are now published.
The public lands belonging to the general body of the Republic, and at the disposal of Congress, were composed,
1st. Of the unchartered territory acquired under the Treaty of Great Britain.
2d. Of various cessions, by individual States, of unoccupied lands situated within the limits of their charters* [footnote listing dates each state surrendered its State lands to Congress].
And 3d. Of the territories of Louisiana and Florida, ceded by France and Spain.
When the Indian titles are extinguished by treaties with their tribes, surveys are made of the country, and it is divided into townships of six miles square, which townships are again sub-divided into thirty-six sections (of one mile square), half sections, &c., and the land is offered for sale at the district land-offices, a reservation being generally made of one section (or one square mile) in each township, to form a fund for education.
— A Few Notes Respecting the United States of North America in Relation to Their Constitution, Their Progress, and the Stocks of the Different States. — C. Stokes, 1839.