The concept of free land in America is nothing new.

More than 160 years ago in the midst of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln launched the Homestead Act of 1862, which gave citizens 160 acres of public land provided they lived on it, improved it, and paid a small registration fee.

In all, more than 270 million acres of land while the law was in effect.

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These days, the prospects of scoring free land in America are few and far between, but there are still a handful of places where it's possible, under the right circumstances.

According to Gokce Capital, 13 different small towns from as far west as Alaska and as far east as New York are offering up some sort of free land, with certain applicable conditions.

Including one city in Iowa and one in Minnesota.

In Iowa, the Crawford County town of Manilla (population 775) is offering free lots in phase two of the Sunrise Addition.

16 new single-family lots are available at no cost to qualified individuals or entities that build a new residence, subject to certain conditions.

In Minnesota, the Dodge County town of Claremont (population 548) is giving away residential lots to nine working families that meet established income limits and pay a $1,000 application fee.

If accepted, families must complete eight hours of homeowner education.

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Every beach town has its share of pluses and minuses, which got us thinking about what makes a beach town the best one to live in. To find out, Stacker consulted data from WalletHub, released June 17, 2020, that compares U.S. beach towns. Ratings are based on six categories: affordability, weather, safety, economy, education and health, and quality of life. The cities ranged in population from 10,000 to 150,000, but they had to have at least one local beach listed on TripAdvisor. Read the full methodology here. From those rankings, we selected the top 50. Readers who live in California and Florida will be unsurprised to learn that many of towns featured here are in one of those two states.

Keep reading to see if your favorite beach town made the cut.

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